Fierce

Investigation Underway After 13-Year-Old Girl From Navajo Nation Mauled To Death By Twenty Dogs

The horrifying details of a thirteen-year-old Navajo Nation girl’s death have rocked the local community of her Arizona home for the past few months.

Lyssa Rose Upshaw, whose mother called her “baby girl,” had dreams of making her high school’s cross country team. Her goals were shut earlier this year in May after being mauled to death by a pack of dogs owned by her neighbor. Recently, the investigation into her death has revealed the grisly circumstances of her death, including that it came at the hands of two dozen dogs.

Upshaw was killed earlier this year while jogging near her home on the Navajo Nation’s Fort Defiance. 

Upshaw’s body was found curled into a ball. According to an interview with Upshaw’s mother, Marissa Jones and the Navajo Times’, Upshaw was discovered with the clothes she was wearing in “shreds” and her legs “all chewed up.” 

“Those dogs killed my baby girl,” Upshaw’s mother told Navajo Times. “This wasn’t supposed to happen.”

A report from the Associated Press, she suffered “extensive injuries that were consistent with canine teeth marks, including cuts and abrasions on her neck and head and deep soft tissue wounds on her legs. Her clothes were torn, and she was covered in dirt.”

“I never thought that would ever happen to my daughter,” Jones explained. “She was a dog lover.”

While ultimately Upshaw’s death was ruled an accident, investigations into the circumstances are still underway. 

Michael Henderson, the Navajo tribe’s criminal investigations director, underlined that “The case is pretty far from being closed, far from being just put aside as an accident or a civil matter or anything like that… We’re still very aggressively pursuing to understand the case to the extent to where if there are any criminal elements attached to what happened.”

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