Caterham dog attack: Victim's family speak of 'extremely difficult time' as investigation continues

The woman died following the dog attack in Caterham.

The family of a young woman who died after a dog attack in Surrey have spoken of their grief as police continue to investigate.

Eight dogs are still being held by police after the death of the 28-year-old following an attack at a Surrey beauty spot last week.

The woman, from London, who has not yet been formally identified, is thought to have been walking a number of dogs on Thursday when she was set upon at Gravelly Hill, Caterham.

Paramedics were unable to save her and she was pronounced dead at the scene.

The victim's name has not yet been released but her next of kin have been informed and are being supported by specialist officers.

In a statement released by police, the woman's family said: “This is an extremely difficult time for us and as well as dealing with this sudden loss in our family, the significant level of media interest and the graphic nature of some of the reporting, has been a source of additional distress.

“We continue to appeal for our privacy to be respected during our time of grief.”

In an update on Tuesday, Surrey Police said that both a forensic pathologist and a veterinary pathologist have been drafted in to determine what happened.

The force said it was continuing to investigate, but that this means “inquiries will take some time to complete”.

Eight dogs were detained at the scene last week and remained in police custody as of Tuesday, it said.

Detectives are keeping their owners up to date with the investigation.

Detective Inspector Josephine Horner, the senior investigating officer, said: “Inquiries into the circumstances surrounding this young woman’s sad death continue and we will provide further updates when possible.

“We know this incident has caused real concern in the local community and neighbourhood officers have been out in the area speaking to local residents over the past few days.

“We continue to ask people not to speculate on the circumstances whilst inquiries are under way.”

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