Family of Warren County dog mauling death victim calls for more investigation

The son of a Warren County woman is questioning whether the official conclusion that she was mauled to death by her dogs Friday is correct.

Mary M. Matthews, 49, was found Friday afternoon in her home with blood evidence in several rooms. The initial conclusion of the Warren County Coroner’s office is that Matthews’ two Great Dane dogs mauled her to death.

“With the help of Clearcreek and Warren County, this has been brushed aside, and she’s just being chalked up as another druggie that was too incoherent to call them for help,” Matthews’ son, Brandon Evans, said Wednesday.

Investigators are awaiting toxicology and results of microscopic examination of evidence gathered after Matthews, 49, of Clearcreek Twp., was found dead in a bathroom of her home off Ohio 73 between Springboro and Waynesville.

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The coroner’s office said injuries from the mauling are believed to have caused her death.

Doyle Burke, chief investigator of the Warren County Coroner’s Office said he was not ready to change his preliminary opinion in the case.

“I don’t know how you change that. The dogs killed her,” Burke said.

Evans, a Miamisburg resident, and other family worked Wednesday on his mother’s funeral arrangements in Troy. He said his mother was a problem for local police and the subject of a protection order obtained by neighbors.

“They said she was a pain in their side. They didn’t like her,” he said.

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Dale Mark Matthews, her husband, called police Friday afternoon and reported finding his wife unresponsive as a possible overdose victim.

Evans said the police appeared to conclude their investigation that day, based partly on the husband’s statements. Dale Mark Matthews reported that Mary Matthews was unable to defend herself from the dogs.

“She’s not as weak as they say she is,” Evans said.

He said that the dogs’ viciousness has been overstated.

Mary Matthews was a 1988 graduate of Troy High School who worked at the Hometown Marketplace store in Waynesville, according to an obituary published Wednesday by the Baird Funeral Home in Troy.

Evans disputed claims that Mary Matthews was a chronic alcoholic, although she enjoyed a “cocktail of prescription pills,” he said.

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“It screams to me there should be a little investigation here,” Evans said.

Burke said the investigation is continuing. He said investigators found numerous beer cans in the house which support claims from her husband that Matthews was a heavy drinker.

Clearcreek Twp. police have also conducted more interviews, Burke said.

Further investigation, such as microscopic examination of Matthews’ multiple wounds, could provide new evidence, according to Burke.

“It’s a sad case,” Burke added. “We are open to any information. Some things just can’t be proven.”

The family will receive friends from noon to 2 p.m. Friday at the funeral home. Funeral services are scheduled for 2 p.m. with interment to follow at Riverside Cemetery in Troy.

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