First picture of woman mauled to death by dogs in Surrey

This is the first picture of a ‘bubbly’ dog walker who was killed by a group of dogs in Surrey.

Natasha Johnston, 28, was walking alongside a number of dogs when she was set upon at at Gravelly Hill in Caterham on January 12.

She was later pronounced dead at the scene.

Natasha died from ‘multiple penetrating dog bites to the neck’ and a wound to her jugular vein, Surrey Coroner’s Court was told.

The coroner said: ‘The medical cause of death was given as 1a) shock and haemorrhage including perforation of the left jugular vein, and in 1b) the pathologist places multiple penetrating dog bites to her neck.’

He added: ‘The reason for the inquest required is the nature of the traumatic injuries.’

The eight dogs involved in the incident were held for forensic tests and police say none are banned breeds.

An 11-stone Leonberger named Shiva is said to be amongst eight dogs taken into police care following the horrifying incident, which left another woman injured.

Jo Butchers, 34, a friend of Ms Johnston from her childhood home of Ryde on the Isle of Wight, told The Mail on Sunday: ‘Long countryside walks with the dogs were her thing.

‘She did a lot of dog walking here, not as a professional but with her own dogs and those of friends.

‘Then she moved away and that became her job in London. She grew up with dogs, so she always loved them.’

Another friend said: ‘She was definitely not new to dogs – the complete opposite. She always loved them and absolutely adored her own, talking about them all the time.

‘She seemed really happy being a dog walker in London, she used to put videos on her Snapchat of the dogs. So it’s ironic the way that she was killed, bless her.’

Before moving to London, Ms Johnston lived in Ryde with her brother and two dogs.

The mother of one childhood friend said: ‘We’re absolutely devastated. She was so caring, a beautiful girl inside and out.

‘She was always bubbly when she used to come to meet my girl. They used to go out together and enjoy their lives as young teenagers.

‘She’s going to be sorely missed. I know there will be a lot of people going up to her funeral.’

It remains unclear whether Shiva was one of the dogs that attacked the 28-year-old – with eyewitnesses claiming at least four of the eight targeted the victim.

Her family said in a statement: ‘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.’

Nobody will be prosecuted over the dog attack.

Detective Inspector Josephine Horner, of Surrey Police, previously said: ‘This is a tragic incident in which a young woman lost her life.

‘I know it has caused real concern locally and I thank the community for bearing with us whilst we conducted our inquiries.

‘The criminal investigation has now concluded and the information we have gathered will be passed to the Surrey Coroner to assist in the coronial process.

‘The dogs continue to be cared for at private kennels to ensure their welfare and their owners are being kept informed.

‘We appreciate this is a difficult and uncertain process for them as the forensic work continues.’

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