Leyton News

Woman killed by dogs in Essex was a former Tesco Leyton worker

Esther Martin, 68, was visiting her grandson in Essex on Saturday when she was attacked by two dogs, believed to be XL bully breeds

By Marco Marcelline

Esther Martin, from Woodford Green, retired from her Tesco Leyton role two years ago. Credit: Essex Police

A woman who was mauled to death by two dogs over the weekend was a former employee at Tesco in Leyton.

Esther Martin, from Woodford Green, was fatally injured on Saturday (3rd February) as she visited her eleven-year-old grandson in the seaside village of Jaywick, near Clacton-on-Sea, Essex.

Police were called shortly after 4pm on Saturday and arrived at the house in minutes, but Esther was sadly pronounced dead at the scene. 

Speaking to the BBC, Esther’s daughter Sonia Martin said her mother had worked at Tesco’s Leyton superstore until her retirement around two years ago.

Essex Police are yet to confirm the breed of the dogs that killed Esther, but Sonia said she believes them to have been unregistered XL bully dogs, which the government added to its banned list of dogs in January. Owners of such dogs are required to have a certificate of exemption, microchip and neuter them, and ensure they are kept on a lead and muzzled in public. 

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Police said two adult dogs at the house were destroyed following the incident. 

Esther’s son-in-law, Ashley Warren, was arrested on suspicion of dangerous dog offences on Saturday night. He has since been released on conditional police bail until 5th March.

Warren was the partner of Esther’s late daughter, and is the father of her grandson whom she had been visiting. Speaking to the BBC, Sonia said her nephew “ran out of the house screaming for help” and said some neighbours then intervened by grabbing spades to try to “fight off” the dogs.

She added: “My concern was if my nephew hadn’t run out of the house what could have then happened to him? He’s eleven.”

Esther had reportedly used a broom to distract the dogs’ six puppies from fighting, which is when two adult dogs are believed to have attacked her. 

Acting detective superintendent Stuart Truss said: “We’re making good progress in our investigation into Esther’s death. It is an investigation with a number of complexities, but we are determined to give Esther’s family the answers they need.

“We are working with experts to confirm the breed of the dogs. This may take some days but it’s really important we get it right.

“I would ask people not to speculate about this element – we will establish the facts and we will keep the community in Jaywick updated.”

Tesco was contacted for comment.

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