88-year-old Lubbock woman killed by her neighbor’s 6 dogs

88-year-old Lubbock woman killed by her neighbor’s 6 dogs
Johnnie Mae Garner, 88, of Lubbock was known as "Mama" to nearly everyone in her neighborhood

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Family members of the woman killed in a dog attack Wednesday night report it was 88-year-old Johnnie Mae Garner.

Johnnie Mae Garner, 88, of Lubbock was known as "Mama" or "Granny" to nearly everyone in her neighborhood (Source: Family members)
Johnnie Mae Garner, 88, of Lubbock was known as "Mama" or "Granny" to nearly everyone in her neighborhood (Source: Family members)

Family members believe the pack of six dogs were trying to get to Garner’s female dog in the backyard of her house. It was reported she tried to scare them away and that is when she was attacked.

Johnnie Mae Garner's house (Source: KCBD)
Johnnie Mae Garner's house (Source: KCBD)

It happened in the 1800 block of E. Colgate around 6:30 p.m.

According to the police report, the owner of the dogs was told by a neighbor that his dogs were loose and running around. He went into the alley to find his dogs and heard Garner screaming for help, and saw his five dogs attacking her. He jumped the fence into the yard to help. The dogs started charging him but stopped before getting to him. The dogs ran out of the yard and the man called 911.

Dogs involved in fatal attack of 88-year-old Johnnie Mae Garner (Source: Lubbock Police Department)
Dogs involved in fatal attack of 88-year-old Johnnie Mae Garner (Source: Lubbock Police Department)
Dogs involved in fatal attack of 88-year-old Johnnie Mae Garner (Source: Lubbock Police Department)
Dogs involved in fatal attack of 88-year-old Johnnie Mae Garner (Source: Lubbock Police Department)

Police say Garner was taken to Covenant Health where she later died.

The owner of the dogs, who has not been identified, flagged down the officers to show them where Garner was.

When he returned to his home, his dogs were back in his own yard. Lubbock Animal Services took custody of the dogs. Officials with Lubbock Animal Services say all six dogs have been euthanized and are being sent to the state for rabies testing, which is protocol. Police officials say he gave permission for the dogs to be taken away and euthanized.

“My mother was one of the greatest mothers of all time, I’ll put it that way,” said her son John Girdy. “She’s a mother and granny to all these people around here, as you can see. The whole neighborhood knows her. I mean, they love her, everybody loves her and when you’d come visit her she makes you happy and you’re going to leave happy. You know what I mean? She would just lift you up. On everything. You know, which is just great. We’re going to miss her, trust me.”

Girdy says his mom was in better shape than he is, and he is 52 years old. He says she has lived in that house since 1973.

“She still has a drivers license, still drives, still conducts her own business, still pays her own bills. We didn’t have to do anything like that for her because she was that energetic," said Girdy.

“You can ask anybody on the street right here. They’d tell you a story, I guarantee you, a great story, uplifting story, happiness. They just do things like bring her food sometimes, plates or whatever. That’s how much they loved her. ‘Anything you need mom?’ they’d ask her ‘anything you need granny?’ ‘I’m going to the store do you need bread or something?’ That’s what they do. Because they love her. To keep her from driving sometimes," he said laughing.

Police officials say on February 25, 2019, LPD received a call of a dog bite in the area of 1800 East Brown Street, which is a block away from yesterday’s incident. Lubbock Animal Services responded to take a report of the incident. Police say a man was injured by a dog, but the wound did not appear to be serious. Police say a poodle was killed during the incident and witnesses reported multiple dogs were involved. There is no word if it was the same group of dogs involved in Wednesday’s fatal attack.

According to the City of Lubbock, no residence within the city shall harbor more than four (4) adult dogs and/or four (4) adult cats, over the age of sixteen (16) weeks. No residence within the city shall harbor more than one (1) litter of puppies and/or one (1) litter of kittens. Any persons desiring to keep more than four (4) adult dogs, four (4) adult cats, or more than one (1) litter of puppies or kittens at premises occupied by them may apply with the director of animal services for a multi-pet permit. The applicant shall pay an application fee at the time of filing.

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