2 Dog Owners Arrested After Man Was Viciously Mauled To Death

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After an unsuspecting man fell victim to a vicious attack that cost him his life, two dog owners were arrested and charged in relation to the mauling.

Shannan Christine McCrackin
Shannan Christine McCrackin and Kenneth Howard Swayne were arrested after a fatal dog attack in Moncks Corner, South Carolina. (Photo Credit: Screenshot)

Shannan Christine McCrackin, 45, and Kenneth Howard Swayne, 44, were both arrested after a fatal dog attack left a 65-year-old man dead in Moncks Corner, South Carolina. According to reports, the unsuspecting victim, later identified as 65-year-old David Eller, was walking through his neighborhood when he was mauled to death by two dogs belonging to McCrackin and Swayne.

The Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office received a call regarding a dog attack with a person severely injured in the Pleasant Oaks Mobile Home Park off Old Whitesville Road at around 5 p.m. on a Tuesday evening. Following the call, Berkeley County EMS and the Whitesville Fire Department responded to the incident at a residence on Ayers Drive, along with the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office.

“I believe our 911 caller was travelling down Old Whitesville Road and saw the dogs dragging around an object and turned around and then discovered that that object was a human being,” Captain Michael Crumley with the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office recalled, according to Count On 2 News.

When deputies arrived, medical personnel were tending to the victim, but sadly, it was already too late. The victim, whom the Berkeley County Coroner’s Office identified as 65-year-old David Eller of Moncks Corner, was pronounced dead at the scene. Following the fatal mauling, the Berkeley County Coroner’s Office and the Sheriff’s Office launched an investigation into the dog attack.

Detectives discovered that two pit bulls, belonging to 45-year-old Shannan Christine McCrackin and 44-year-old Kenneth Howard Swayne, were responsible for the fatal mauling. McCrackin and Swayne, both of Moncks Corner, were arrested and charged in the fatal dog attack, accused of not properly containing the dogs, which allowed for the unprovoked attack, investigators said.

“This was a vicious attack on an unsuspecting victim, and this should have never occurred,” Berkeley County Sheriff Duane Lewis said. “If the owner of the dogs would have taken the proper responsibility for the safekeeping of the animals, the attack could have been prevented.”

Shannan Christine McCrackin
Kenneth Howard Swayne and Shannan Christine McCrackin were both arrested and charged in the fatal dog attack. (Photo Credit: Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office)

McCrackin was charged with involuntary manslaughter and two counts of dangerous animals unconfined on-premises, The Berkeley Observer reported. Meanwhile, Swayne was also charged with two counts of dangerous animals unconfined on-premises. McCrackin had a $25,000 bond, while Swayne’s bond was set at $10,000. Both were booked into the Berkeley County jail the day after the fatal mauling, according to The Blaze.

Not only was the attack reportedly unprovoked, but the incident occurred on the evening of Halloween, a time when pet owners should expect an increase in pedestrians in residential areas. So, it seems more than fair that Shannan Christine McCrackin and Kenneth Howard Swayne would be charged for their failures. But, of course, there is another debate to be had—the debate over pit bull ownership and whether it’s wise.

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Sadly, this is far from the first story of its kind. Instead, the news is seemingly inundated with stories of fatal dog attacks, often perpetuated by pit bulls. Yet, again and again, we hear that the dogs aren’t the problem, but rather, it’s the owners who are. So, since we are to believe it’s bad ownership, not bad breeds, that make dogs aggressive, everyone—regardless of how they feel about pit bulls—should applaud the fact that McCrackin and Swayne were charged in this senseless death.

However, we would be amiss and not doing anyone any favors if we didn’t point out that, after such a vicious attack by a beloved pet, we often hear the owners say that they never saw it coming. Statistics also paint a grim picture regarding this beloved breed, and I’ll let them speak for themselves. According to the national dog bite victim advocacy group DogsBite.org, of the 568 Americans killed by dogs between 2005 and 2020, pit bulls were reportedly responsible for 67% of those deaths.

Stock image for visual representation only. (Photo Credit: Screenshot)

Although pit bulls only make up approximately 6% of the dog population, they are responsible for well over half of all attacks as well as deaths. That should say all we need to know. However, if that’s not enough to cause someone to reconsider pit bull ownership, maybe the words of Marlo Matthews, a longtime dog breeder who gave WREG-TV his opinion on owning pit bulls, will give others something to ponder.

“I know how loyal they can be. I know how loving they can be, but I also know how dangerous they can be,” Matthews said of the controversial breed. “You are playing with your life when you have those in your house,” he warned. “Something may never happen, but when it does, will you then be like, ‘I should have got rid of this problem.'” I wonder if that’s what Shannan Christine McCrackin and Kenneth Howard Swayne are thinking now.