A woman was attacked by a pack of raccoons near Ft. Steilacoom Park Monday afternoon, Lakewood police said.
Michaela Lee, 28, was walking home with her leashed dog after jogging through the park about 1:30 p.m., when the raccoons attacked, her boyfriend Shane Bennett said.
Her dog, Maddison, ran away to chase two raccoons up a tree as she was leaving the park on a trail, said Lakewood police spokesman Chris Lawler. Lee went to get the dog, at which point more raccoons came out of a bush and chased her as she ran away.
She ran 75 feet before they knocked her down. A witness told police that six or seven raccoons chased her, and that three attacked her for about 15 seconds.
Lee was taken to the emergency room for scratches and puncture wounds. Animal control and medics responded to the scene.
Bennett told police that Lee suffered about 100 wounds total, one of which needed a staple.
She was treated for several hours, started a round of rabies shots, and begins antibiotics today, Bennett said. Though they’ve since learned that rabies is rare in raccoons there.
“These are vicious little nasty things that can maul people,” Bennett added.
Neighbor Michael Parks looked out his window when he heard screaming Monday and saw Lee on the ground at the edge of his lawn. He called 911 when he noticed she was wounded.
He said he believes the raccoons that attacked are the same ones that have been in the area since he moved there 17 years ago.
“They have babies and they grow up, ” Parks said. “There’s just kind of a continuous family of them.”
He said the animals are sometimes violent toward each other, but have never attacked humans to his knowledge.
“They just hang around here,” Parks said. “They come around and a couple of us in the neighborhood feed them.”
See Parks’ video of the neighborhood raccoon family on Facebook.
Video courtesy KIRO-TV