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Dad strangles coyote to defend N.H. family under attack

Associated Press

Exeter, N.H. – A coyote attacked a pair of dogs, bit a woman and skirmished with a vehicle before being strangled by a father defending his family on a walk Monday, police said.

The same coyote is likely connected to three attacks that happened relatively close together and throughout the course of an hour, Kensington Police Chief Scott Cain said Monday.

Kensington, N.H., police warned residents Monday of an aggressive coyote. They believe it was responsible for three attacks before being killed.

Police say they believe the coyote attacked a vehicle on a roadway in Hampton Falls, New Hampshire, bit a 62-year-old woman and her dogs on a porch in Kensington and then attacked a family walking on a trail in Exeter.

Law enforcement officials were searching for the coyote when they got word that it had been killed.

“The coyote came out of the woods and grabbed a child by the jacket. The dad went into protection mode and strangled the coyote,” Cain said.

Ian O’Reilly told WMUR-TV that he was bitten on his chest and forearm but managed to get on top of the animal and cut off its air supply.

“It’s really just instinct,” he said. “The fact that when we tried to kick and push and get rid of him, it became clear that he was not disengaging.”

Pat Lee told police the animal tried to follow her into her home and bit her as she tried to keep it out.

“I realized this was a coyote, and I just started screaming at the top of my lungs to try to get him to stop and go away,” Lee said. “It was very, very scary, but it could’ve been a lot worse.”

New Hampshire Fish and Game collected the coyote and will test it for rabies. The victims were being treated for rabies as a precaution.