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Deputies: Elderly woman airlifted after being attacked by three dogs in Brooksville

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Check tampabay.com for the latest breaking news and developments.
Published May 27

BROOKSVILLE — An elderly woman was flown to a hospital early Monday morning after she was attacked by three dogs in Hernando County, deputies said.

The Hernando County Sheriff's Office said firefighters, deputies and animal control officers responded to the call around 7:30 a.m. on Spring Lake Highway to find the victim, not named by deputies, suffering from severe dog bites to both of her legs.

Firefighters treated her at the scene before she was flown to a trauma center for advanced care. She was in stable condition early Monday afternoon.

Deputies said the woman was walking on Spring Lake Highway, something she regularly does, when the three dogs attacked her.

Related: Woman airlifted to hospital after Florida alligator attack

A witness called 911, deputies said. That same person attempted to help the woman by performing basic first aid on her wounds while waiting for rescue workers.

During the 911 call, the witness told operators the three dogs that attacked the woman were still running loose in the area — describing them as pit bulls, deputies said.

The dogs' owner, Ralph Hughes, of Brooksville, has been charged with three counts of owning a public nuisance animal and three counts of owning an unrestrained animal.

Deputies and animal control officers said one or more of the dogs tried to attack them when they arrived at the scene. The Sheriff's Office said bean bag rounds were used to subdue the dogs and that all three were then taken to Hernando County Animal Services.

Deputies said Hughes surrendered all three dogs for euthanasia because he believes they are too aggressive.

Contact Josh Fiallo at jfiallo@tampabay.com. Follow @ByJoshFiallo.

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