A coyote, suspected to have attacked a woman and her dogs earlier, targeted a two-year-old boy. The animal grabbed the child and tried to drag him away. The child's parents separated the animal from the boy but it did not cease its attack. Using his bare hands, the child's father, strangled the coyote to death for the safety of his family.

On January 20, police were alerted by a car owner in Hampton Falls saying that their vehicle had been attacked by a wild animal. Around 20 minutes later, a 62-year-old woman named Pat Lee and her dogs were bitten by a coyote. The woman's dogs had gone out of the house but were chased by the wild animal. The coyote followed the dogs and tried to enter Lee's home. She first thought the coyote was a stray dog. When she realised it was a wild animal, she started to scream to scare the animal away. Lee and one of her dogs were bitten by the coyote before it escaped.

Later, New Hampshire resident Ian O'Reilly was walking along the Exeter trail with his wife and three children. Suddenly a coyote appeared and tried to drag away O'Reilly's two-year-old son. The animal grabbed the boy by the jacket and pulled him to the ground.

A coyote cloned by South Korean stem cell scientist Hwang and his team is pictured on a farm at a wildlife protection centre in Pyeongtaek
A coyote that had attacked a woman and her dogs was strangled to death by a man when it tried to snatch a two-year-old boy. Reuters

O'Reilly and his wife managed to separate the animal from the boy. Speaking to WMUR, O'Reilly recalled that they kicked at the animal to try and drive it away. It became clear to the father that the animal was not going to leave without its prey.

After being bitten on his chest and arms, O'Reilly grabbed the animal's snout. Instinctively, the protective father held down the animal until it suffocated to death. Police arrived and took the animal's body for a post mortem.

O'Reilly's son did not sustain any injuries. O'Reilly, Lee, and her dog had to get rabies shots in case the coyote was rabid. The post mortem report can confirm if the animal was infected.

ABC News pointed out Humane Society's observation that human-coyote encounters are rare. Coyotes are nocturnal and shy animals that run away from humans. The reason behind the brazen attacks by the dead animal could be due to rabies.