5 Great Danes Believed to have Killed Their Owner in Iowa

A woman whose body was discovered lying in a ditch near Rossie, Iowa, was killed by her five Great Danes, local authorities announced Wednesday.

Mindy Kiepe, 43, is believed to have been attacked by her pets in a rural part of Clay County on Aug. 15 and was later discovered in the ditch by a man who initially assumed she was involved in a motorcycle accident, reported KTIV-TV.

The man was unable to get close to Kiepe’s body because the large dogs were still roaming nearby, added the outlet.

According to the Clay County Sheriff’s Office, Kiepe’s body was discovered near the intersection of 450th Street and 200th Avenue, a short distance from her farm in northwest Iowa. Kiepe was pronounced dead at the scene, KTIV reported.

Following an autopsy conducted at the Iowa State Medical Examiner in Ankeny, the state medical examiner ruled on Aug. 17 that her death was caused by multiple dog bite injuries, KIMT added.

Investigators determined that five Great Dane dogs owned by Kiepe caused her death. The animals have since been euthanized.

The Clay County Sheriff’s Office did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.

In 2019, another woman was found dead inside her home after reportedly being attacked by her two Great Danes in Ohio, according to an incident report from Clearcreek Township Police Department.

The report stated that officer Wendi Blaha found the body of Mary Matthews, 49, at her home in the village of Waynesville after authorities were notified of a possible overdose. Upon arrival, Blaha was met by husband Mark Matthews and his son, Luke Matthews, who had discovered Mary lying unresponsive on the bathroom floor.

Blaha then entered the home and noticed bloody steps in the garage that led into the home. Bloodstains were also found on the door frame entering the laundry room as well as a significant amount of blood on the washer and dryer, the report added.

Numerous cuts and puncture marks were later found on Mary with at least one chunk of flesh missing from her left upper ankle area. Mary herself appeared bloated, was not of good color and was not breathing, added the report. A medic later pronounced her dead at the scene.

Upon observing more bloodstains throughout the house, Blaha and additional officers found two “large but thin” Great Danes, one black and one brown, on the enclosed deck of the home, continued the report.

Mark told authorities and local news outlet WLWT5 that the couple rescued the Great Danes two years prior to the tragedy and that they had become increasingly vicious in the weeks leading up to the fatal attack.

“I wanted to get rid of him, but she wouldn’t,” Mark said of his late wife. “She loves animals.”

WLWT5 reported that the dogs were later put down.

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