Wheelchair-bound double-amputee, 80, mauled to death by pack of dogs in Harleyville

An 80-year-old wheelchair-bound double-amputee from Harleyville has died after being mauled by a pack of dogs, according to the Dorchester County Coroner’s Office.

On May 8, Carlton Freeman was minding his own business while going down the side of the road in his wheelchair, at Spring Branch and Dunnings Road, when he was attacked by dogs, Dorchester County Coroner Chris Nisbet.

Freeman was a bi-lateral amputee at the knees, from a previous injury years ago, Nisbet said. He told paramedics he was pulled from his wheelchair by his legs as he tried to fight off the dogs, he said.

Freeman also stated that the dogs bit him and pulled at his clothing. Paramedics transported him to Trident Hospital, where he was admitted to the intensive care unit, Nisbet said. He died Sunday as a result of his injuries from the attack, he said.

“Upon my examination of Mr. Freeman, it is a wonder that this gentleman was able to hang on as long as he did,” Nisbet said. “He had bites and lacerations from his legs to the top of his head. This is very sad story, but even worse that Mr. Freeman was basically helpless to the attack, due to being a bi-lateral amputee.”

Dorchester County sheriff’s deputies are investigating the incident. Freeman told them he was attacked by four dogs, Maj. John Garrison said.

Deputies, along with Dorchester County Animal Control, were able to capture three of the animals and are still trying to locate and capture the fourth, Garrison said.

Neighbors told deputies the dogs had been roaming around the neighborhood for months, according to an incident report.

Deputies spoke with a 61-year-old Dunnings Road woman who told them she owns three of the dogs — a mother and two puppies, the report stated. Deputies noted that the mother and puppies had traces of blood on their fur.

The woman was unsure who owned the fourth dog, the report stated.

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