Woman's body found covered in dog bites in backyard, police say

HOUSTON – A woman’s body was found Friday in the backyard of her west Houston home, and she appeared to have been bitten multiple times by dogs, police said.

The discovery was made about 8:15 a.m. at a home on Susanna Lane near Longvine Drive.

Houston police said officers were conducting a welfare check on 66-year-old Elaine Richman after she had not appeared for her dog training classes in two days. Her neighbors and brother, Bruce Richman, said ElaineRichman trained her Doberman pinschers for years and entered them in dog shows.

“She would take such pride in seeing them win ribbons and awards and many of her dogs were champions. That was her life,” Bruce Richman, who lives in Illinois.

Police said officers found Elaine Richman dead in her backyard Friday. She had several dog bites on her arms, hands and face, police said.

Preliminary autopsy results list a sharp force injury as the cause of death. Investigators said they found two adult Doberman pinschers in Elaine Richman's home, but did not say if those dogs were responsible for the bites on the woman’s body or her death.

“I didn’t see them as vicious,” said Robert Amie, a neighbor. “They sound vicious, but they never acted vicious toward anybody.”

Amie lived next door to Elaine Richman for more than 20 years. He said he would always see her train her dogs in her backyard and they always seemed friendly.

“They were trained so well from what I saw. It’s hard for me to believe that they would attack her, but, you know, I don’t know,” he said.

A complete autopsy is underway, investigators said.