A woman was working in her yard Thursday when a pit bull attacked her and a police officer who came to her rescue.

The dog’s owner, 35-year-old David Davis of Lewiston, has been charged with keeping a dangerous dog, failing to license and vaccinate a dog and allowing a dog to run at large, according to Lt. David St. Pierre, a spokesperson for the Lewiston Police Department.

The 71-year-old woman was raking the yard of her Helen Street home at about 11:14 a.m. when the dog attacked her, knocking her to the ground and biting her. She lost consciousness before police arrived at the scene, St. Pierre said.

The responding officer noticed the severity of the attack as the woman shouted that the dog is “killing me,” and attempted to stun the dog, which stopped the attack momentarily.

The dog then attempted to bite the officer before returning to attacking the woman, biting her face and neck.

Fearing for the woman’s life, the officer shot the dog in its side. The dog bit the woman once more before it ran off a short distance and died.

The woman was taken to Central Maine Medical Center, where she was treated for arm, face, leg and neck injuries, St. Pierre said.

The dog was taken to the Maine State Health and Environmental Testing Laboratory to determine if it was infected with rabies.

The attack remains under investigation.

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Leela Stockley

Leela Stockley is an alumna of the University of Maine. She was raised in northern Maine, and loves her cat Wesley, her puppy Percy and staying active in the Maine outdoors.