Texas Man Charged After His Dogs Maul Elderly Man To Death In Unprovoked Attack

·3 min read

A Texas man has been charged in the death of an elderly man who was allegedly mauled to death by his pack of dogs.

Dog-owner Samuel Cartwright, 47, was arrested following an investigation into the canine attack that killed 71-year-old Freddy Garcia in Fresno, according to the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office.

Garcia was fatally attacked by seven dogs in the 4300 block of Mark Terrace Lane around 1:30 p.m. on July 18. He was taken to a Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center in Houston where he was later pronounced dead.

Surveillance footage of the incident showed Garcia walking down the sidewalk before he was brutally attacked by multiple dogs, Houston television station KRTK-TV reported. He’d been walking to a neighborhood store at the time of the incident, authorities said.

During a press conference on July 19, Fort Bend County Sheriff Eric Fagan said Garcia “did nothing to provoke the animals” and that the pack of dogs attacked “for no reason.”

“This is a tragic, tragic incident," Fagan said. "It was uncalled for. It was senseless."

All seven dogs — which were of a pit bull mix — have since been captured by deputies and animal control services, officials said. According to a witness, at least two of the dogs still had blood on them at the time of their capture, per KTRK-TV.

Cartwright, who was identified by investigators as the dogs’ owner, has since been charged with second-degree attack by dog resulting in death in Garcia’s killing.

“This devastating tragedy didn’t have to happen,” Fagan added. “I extend my deepest condolences to the Garcia family and his neighbors as they adjust to the loss of Mr. Garcia.”

Cartwright was charged under Lillian’s Law, in which the owners of violent dogs can be legally responsible in cases of dog attacks that cause death or injury. The state law is named after Lillian Stiles, a 76-year-old Milam County woman who was mauled to death by six dogs in her front yard in 2005.

"Protect yourselves,” Kevin Aguilar with Fort Bend County Animal Services told KTRK-TV. “If you're walking in the streets, carry a stick. We all love dogs. But a lot of them can be dangerous."

Meanwhile, Garcia’s granddaughter described the 71-year-old as “youthful” and “full of life.”

“He liked to dance,” Ivon Fajardo told KTRK-TV. “He liked to sing. He was really joyful. We would get together on the weekend and enjoy each other's company. Now, that he's not here. It's not going to be the same."

Cartwright is being held on a $100,000 bond at a Fort Bend County detention center, according to online jail records obtained by Oxygen.com. No court information was immediately available for him. It’s also unclear if the Texas man has retained legal counsel.

If convicted, Cartwright faces a maximum of 20 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine, prosecutors said.

Cartwright was previously indicted on aggravated assault with deadly weapon charges in 2017 but the case was dismissed, separate case filings show. He also was arrested for theft in 2019 but that case was also dismissed.