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Attorneys Representing Dog Attack Victims Across Texas

This website is maintained by the Law Offices of Dean Malone, P.C., a Dallas, Texas law firm representing people across Texas for dog bite injury cases. We have attempted to provide useful information for those harmed by animal attacks.

Posts Tagged ‘American Pit Bull Terrier’

An 18-month-old is Killed by the Family Dog, a Rottweiler

Wednesday, June 21st, 2017

Dog A fatal dog attack occurred in Phoenix, Arizona, on June 9, 2017. According to investigators, 18-month-old Marcos Raya Jr. was in his home, and his grandmother was babysitting him. The woman was doing household work when she opened the home’s back door. When she did, the family’s pet, a Rottweiler, rushed into the house, grabbed the baby, and dragged him outside, brutally attacking him. The grandmother attempted to pull the dog off of the boy, but she was unable to. She called 9-1-1, and Phoenix police officers and fire officials went to the scene. They found that the Rottweiler was still actively engaging in the vicious attack on the baby. The attack stopped only after one of the police officers shot and injured the dog. The boy was quickly transported to a pediatric trauma hospital, and he was described as being in extremely critical condition. The baby died at the hospital.

Captain Rob McDade, a spokesperson for the Phoenix fire department, said the child was unable to recover because of the amount of dog bites he had. Fire officials also said the baby’s father was the dog’s owner, and for three years the Rottweiler had been the family pet.

Marcos Raya Jr was the 14th person in the U.S. to die from a dog attack in 2017, according to DogsBite.org, a website that is devoted to tracking dog attack fatalities. Nine of the 2017 victims were killed by pit bulls or pit bull mixes, which is a common statistic. The majority of people killed by dogs are killed by pit bulls year after year. Rottweilers are the second deadliest, though this year, the 18-month-old is the only fatal victim of a Rottweiler attack.

–Guest Contributor

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An Infant Becomes the Fourth in the U.S. to Die from a Pit Bull Attack Since April 6, 2017

Thursday, May 25th, 2017

An American Pit Bull Terrier muzzled. Español:...

An American Pit Bull Terrier muzzled. Español: Un Pit Bull Terrier Americano con bozal. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Six-month-old Kamiko Dao Tsuda-Saelee of Las Vegas, Nevada, was killed by the family pit bull on May 8, 2017. She was the fourth person in the U.S. to be killed by a pit bull since last month on April 6. The baby had been in her home in a baby walker near the pit bull when the dog attacked her. The baby’s mother had gone into another room. The dog was biting the baby’s head when the mom returned. Although she was able to quickly stop the attack, the damage was already too much. The infant was pronounced dead shortly after being transported to a nearby hospital. According to the coroner, the cause of death was multiple blunt force head injuries. The family had owned the dog for nine years, and he had no history of biting. Shortly after the fatal pit bull attack, Clark County Animal Control euthanized the dog.

On April 27, there was another fatal pit bull attack. Again, a family dog was responsible for the death. Thirty-two-year-old Lisa Green of Breinigsville, Pennsylvania was brutally mauled to death on a deck of her home as neighbors watched in horror and tried to save her. She had owned the dog for approximately 2 ½ years.

A couple of days prior to Green’s death, 60-year-old Maurice Brown was killed by a pit bull in Dayton, Ohio. The dog broke the chain that had restrained him, and he attacked Brown as he was walking in an alley. Brown was heard screaming for help. Officers were called to the scene, where they discovered the dog still actively attacking Brown. The pit bull was shot and killed by police. Brown was quickly transported to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Eighty-two-year-old Cecille Short was walking in a residential neighborhood with her dog when two pit bulls savagely attacked and killed her and her pet. Various members of the neighborhood had issued warnings about the dogs. The dogs’ owner, a 31-year-old man, has been charged with second-degree manslaughter in Short’s death.

Seven people have been killed by pit bulls in the U.S. this year. The breed has been responsible for the clear majority of dog attack fatalities year after year. In 2015, pit bulls were responsible for 82% of the dog-related deaths, killing a total of 28 people. The breed is obviously different than any other and should be banned, for the safety of all members of society, including pit bull owners who overlook these deadly statistics.

–Guest Contributor

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A Pit Bill Mix Kills a 32-year-old Woman at her Home

Wednesday, May 10th, 2017

English: American pit bull terrier (named Tutt...

English: American pit bull terrier (named Tuttle) seated. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On April 27, 2017, 32-year-old Lisa Green of Breinigsville, Pennsylvania, was savagely attacked by her family’s pit bull-boxer mix. She was on the rear deck of her home when neighbors heard commotion and witnessed the dog biting her neck in a gruesome scene. One neighbor tried to stop the attack by throwing the dog a hambone. But witnesses said the dog was completely engrossed in attacking Green and didn’t slow down. Then a neighbor tried jabbing the dog with a narrow board. The dog bit the board and broke it. The scene was further described in horrific terms. Then a neighbor, who is also a law enforcement officer, got his .380 caliber handgun and shot the dog. It was only then that the attack stopped. Green was transported to a nearby hospital and later pronounced dead at 2:46 pm.

The pit bull was 3 ½ years old, and Green had been the dog’s owner for 2 ½ years. According to an unidentified source, this wasn’t the first act of violence connected with the dog. A man told reporters the dog bit his grandson in the face a few years ago.

No one knows the circumstances which led to the fatal pit bull attack, but this is not an unusual type of event for pit bulls. The breed is more deadly than all other dog breeds combined, by a wide margin. In 2016, 22 people in the U.S. were killed by a pit bull, and many of the victims were the owners. Children and the elderly are most vulnerable to fatal pit bull attacks, but people of every age group are killed each year.

It seems that no matter how much evidence from actual fatalities and injuries caused by pit bulls mounts up, legislators aren’t keeping up by pushing legislation to ban pit bulls. What type of tragedy might it finally take to instigate helpful protective laws?

–Guest Contributor

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A 79-year-old Florida Man Dies Days after a Vicious Pit Bull Attack

Tuesday, March 7th, 2017

1 year old brindle Pit bull mix playing at Fle...

1 year old brindle Pit bull mix playing at Fletcher Elementary School, Serra Mesa neighborhood, San Diego, California. Poncho was very people-friendly, cat-friendly, and dog-friendly. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In Palm Coast, Florida, on February 19, 2017, 79-year-old James E. Bennett was walking his Yorkshire terrier in his neighborhood complex when a pit bull mix brutally attacked them. Bennett tried to protect his dog, to no avail. His dog was killed and he was severely injured on his right arm. Bennett was hospitalized and later released. He died of a cardiac episode at his home a few days later, on February 24. Witnesses of the brutal scene on February 19 included owners of the attacking dog and a bystander, and details were provided and corroborated.

Helena Karnani, age 58, told the sheriff’s department that she had been walking her pets with her husband when the leash on their 2-year-old pit bull mix broke. The dog began running around and her husband was unable to catch up to him. The pit bull mix immediately charged Bennett and his small dog, once he saw them.

Bennett picked up his dog as the threatening dog approached, and the pit bull mix lunged while still running at them. The dog bit the Yorkie on her back and bit Bennett’s right arm at the same time. According to Karnani, Bennett began hitting the attacking dog with his left hand. The large dog relentlessly lunged until Bennett was knocked to the ground. Bennett lost his grip on the Yorkie. The pit bull quickly snatched up and viciously mauled the small dog.

The pit bull mix was finally brought under control. When police arrived, they found that the Yorkshire did not survive and Bennett was severely wounded. He was taken by ambulance to Florida Hospital Flagler. Bennett’s wife, Sandra, briefly lost consciousness during an anxiety attack at the scene and was taken to the hospital in a second ambulance.

The Karnanis’ voluntarily surrendered their pit bull mix to be euthanized by the humane society.

Bennett returned home after being hospitalized, and it was at home that he suffered an apparent heart attack and was later pronounced dead at the hospital.

Pit bulls and pit bull mixes are the only breeds known to attack in ways similar to what occurred in this tragic incident. Other dogs may bite or attack resulting in death, but no other dogs relentlessly attack and tear at people’s flesh in this and far worse ways. Pit bulls are like wolves in sheep’s clothing, killing one person in the U.S. approximately every two weeks over the past several years. In fact, an elderly man in California died on February 28, 2017, as a result of a pit bull attack that had occurred earlier in the month. It’s past time to ban the breed.

–Guest Contributor

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A 76-year-old Man and His Pet are Killed by Two Pit Bulls

Wednesday, March 1st, 2017

English: American Staffordshire Terrier Deutsc...

English: American Staffordshire Terrier aka a pit bull. Deutsch: American Staffordshier Terrier (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Valentine Herrera was savagely attacked by two pit bulls on February 2, 2017, and he died from the injuries on February 28. The fatal pit bull attack occurred in Los Angeles, California, as the victim was taking his dog, a Pomeranian, for a walk at about 6 p.m. The two pit bulls ran upon them and first attacked the man’s pet, reportedly tearing and shredding the small dog. As Herrera tried to intervene, the pit bulls turned on him. They knocked him to the ground and tore into him relentlessly, according to witnesses. After being rushed to a nearby hospital, he underwent brain surgery and received other treatment for his injuries.

Neighbors reported that the same two pit bulls killed another neighbor’s dog four days before the attack on Herrera. Stephanie Grezelle said she and her children witnessed the pit bulls mauling their pet to death. She rushed their pet to a veterinarian, but the damage was too extensive and the dog died.

There is no report yet on the fate of the dogs or on whether or not the dogs’ owner could face charges related to the fatality.

This was the second fatal pit bull attack this year. The first victim was 6-year-old Logan Braatz of Fulton County, GA. The child was walking to a school bus stop in the midst of a group of children when the two dogs attacked him and a 5-year-old girl, Syrai Sanders. Although Syrai survived, her entire scalp was removed from her skull during the attack. She faces multiple plastic surgeries. The dog owner in this case was arrested and has been charged with two counts of misdemeanor reckless conduct.

A look at fatal pit bull attacks in recent years provides convincing proof that pit bulls are too dangerous to exist in society without strict regulations that hold owners strictly to account, in the event someone is injured or killed.

–Guest Contributor

 

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How to Identify a Dog Used for Dog Fighting

Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

American Staffordshire Terrier o imieniu Gamba.

American Staffordshire Terrier o imieniu Gamba. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Stories often make the news about abandoned dogs that appear to have been used as bait dogs in dogfighting rings. Some groups believe that these tales are often designed to create sympathy and increase donations to pet rescue organizations. There may be a certain level of scamming going on. Unfortunately, however, dogfighting is a very real illegal bloodsport in which animals are treated with horrible cruelty. Those involved often make a lot of money. In addition to keeping the activity clandestine in order to avoid an arrest, things are kept pretty well hidden for financial motivations, as well.

The humane society says dogs involved in dogfighting frequently suffer severe if not fatal injuries. The majority of dogs used in fighting are bred and trained specifically for dogfighting. Such an upbringing involves mistreatment and abuse from puppyhood on.

A dog that has been in fights will usually have deep puncture wounds, severe bruising, and broken bones. Hours or days after being in a dogfight, the dogs often die of shock, dehydration, exhaustion, infection, or blood loss. When a dog won’t fight, he usually becomes a bait dog used in training of fighters. The violence, animal abuse, and suffering involved in this bloodsport is disturbing.

In all 50 states, dogfighting is a felony offense. If someone brings a minor to a dogfight, it is also a felony offense, under federal law. The large profits people get from their involvement in dogfighting made the previous penalty of a misdemeanor ineffective and meaningless.

–Guest Contributor

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Are your Home Insurance Rates Higher Because of the Breed of your Dog?

Wednesday, October 19th, 2016

Daddy

Pit bull (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Whether your dog has bitten anyone or not, if he is a certain breed, you may need to pay higher home insurance premiums. Although insurance companies generally do cover homeowners for issues related to their dogs, there are limitations. One important factor is an exclusion list naming dog breeds that won’t be covered.

Many insurance companies blacklist coverage on certain breeds, including the following, with pit bull terriers always at the top:

  • Pit bull terriers
  • Staffordshire terriers
  • Rottweilers
  • German shepherds
  • Presa Canarios
  • Chow chows
  • Doberman Pinschers
  • Akitas
  • Wolf-hybrids
  • Bull Mastiffs
  • Cane Corsos
  • Great Danes
  • Alaskan Malamutes
  • Siberian Huskies

Pit bulls are consistently the cause of more than 60% of all fatalities caused by dog attacks in the U.S. and yet the owners never expect that the breed will intentionally cause harm. Insurance is about covering unforeseen events, yet they don’t cover pit bulls and many other dog breeds. What do they know that dog owners aren’t seeing?

Risk related to dogs is assessed via various resources. Temperament scores of dogs are given by the American Temperament Test Society and other organizations. One fact that emerged is that several small breeds are associated with perhaps the largest number of bites. The severity of injuries, however, is the greater measure, as regards insurance coverage on dogs.

Insurance companies factor in the percentage of owners of the various dog breeds. Some might suggest that more pit bulls are on the attack because there are more pit bull owners and not because a higher number of aggressive dogs exist.

Some statistics just can’t be disputed, and it is understandable why insurance companies recognize the risk and therefore won’t cover some dog bite claims. Pit bull terriers caused 295 fatalities in the U.S. between 1982 and 2014. Rottweilers caused 85 deaths during that time frame. Siberian Huskies were next, with 26 deaths. The next figures were 19, 18, 15, 8, and on down. There is no denying that pit bull terriers pose an unusual threat. The insurance companies recognize it but why don’t dog owners who adopt pit bulls to their peril and the peril of others? The risk is clear.

–Guest Contributor

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Two Pit Bulls Kill a Toddler in Topeka, Kansas

Wednesday, October 5th, 2016

English: American Staffordshire Terrier Deutsc...

English: American Staffordshire Terrier Deutsch: American Staffordshier Terrier (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On September 24, 2016, Piper Dunbar, became the 20th person in the U.S. to be killed by pit bulls this year. The 2-year-old girl was found dead under a tarp in her front yard. Her death was attributed to an attack by two pit bulls. The dogs belonged to a family friend who was temporarily staying at the residence. According to her father, the toddler fell asleep with him on the couch and went outside after he fell asleep. Initially, the child was reported to be missing. Piper’s father and the dogs’ owner were taken to the Law Enforcement Center in Topeka, Kansas, for questioning. Both of the pit bulls were euthanized by authorities.

In 2015, pit bulls were responsible for 82% of the fatal dog attacks in the U.S. In other words, 28 of the 34 dog bite-related deaths last year were caused by pit bulls. This is an alarming statistic, especially when you consider that, at most, pit bulls make up 7% of the total dog population.

Although the percentage has been higher than usual in the last couple of years, pit bulls have consistently been responsible for at least 60% of all annual dog attack fatalities. This pattern has been recognized in many communities, but getting the breed banned is extremely difficult. Advocates of the dogs are passionate and include most dog behavioral experts, many veterinarians, and other professionals.

Denver has been a model for cities determined to initiate a pit bull ban and keep it in place. Their efforts have been met with consistent opposition, but city officials have managed to continue protecting the public from this unpredictably dangerous breed.

–Guest Contributor

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Dallas Residents Fear they Can’t Avoid a Dog Attack

Thursday, September 22nd, 2016

Deutsch: American Staffordshire Terrier Deutsc...

Deutsch: American Staffordshire Terrier Deutsch: American Staffordshire Terrier (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Antoinette Brown, age 52, was viciously attacked by a pack of loose dogs on May 2, 2016, in southern Dallas. Brown was bitten over 100 times and died from her injuries on May 9. People in the same neighborhood were in the news this week, making it clear that the problem of loose and stray dogs has not been solved. One neighbor recalls hearing the screams of a woman who was seriously injured by loose dogs in July in the same neighborhood where Brown was fatally injured. The dog attack victim was 39-year-old Tamika Batts. She was bitten dozens of times and was injured on her arms, face, and feet. She suffered serious injuries and received extensive hospital treatment.

City officials made promises about doing a better job of controlling the stray population and having dog owners keep their dogs restrained. More resources have been devoted to the cause. The problem is that strays were endangering people in southern Dallas before Brown was killed, when Batts was attacked, and they are still a problem today.

There is speculation about the reasons southern Dallas has more than its fair share of loose dogs. It is a low-income area, many stray dogs are dumped in the area, people abandon their dogs when evicted, and dogs aren’t spayed or neutered as frequently as in other parts of the city.

It has become a common practice for people in southern Dallas to go walking only when they also carry a bat, a large stick, a golf club, or some other means of protecting themselves. The fear of being attacked is very real. One neighbor shared that she has nightmares about being attacked by a pack of dogs. Until the city finds a way to resolve the situation, people are wise to carry weapons when walking.

–Guest Contributor

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A 52-year-old Man is Killed by Pit Bull Mixes; Dogs are Released Back to Owner

Wednesday, August 17th, 2016

1 year old brindle Pit bull mix playing in bac...

1 year old brindle Pit bull mix playing in backyard (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In a tragic story out of Honolulu Hawaii, two pit bull mixes killed Crisencio Aliado, age 52, on July 29, 2016. The victim was a homeless man, and his bloodied body was discovered on the bank of a stream. The two pit bull mix dogs were at the scene and were evidently responsible for Crisencio’s death. Police took the dogs into their custody at that time. It was found by the medical examiner that the victim died from multiple bite injuries. The fatal pit bull attack happened behind a local business belonging to the owner of the pit bull mixes. The dog owner said the dogs somehow escaped the warehouse, which is fenced in. A friend of Crisencio said the dog attack victim had been washing his clothing in a stream when the dogs attacked. He also said the deceased was as mild-mannered a person as you could meet. Authorities returned the pit bulls to their owners on August 11.

It can be terrifying to think that dogs found responsible for the death of a human are simply returned to the same person who failed to ensure the safety of the public on at least one tragic occasion. The United States is not the only place where this type of alarming situation occurs.

In news out of The United Kingdom this week, a 52-year-old man was fatally attacked by a dog that had recently been returned to its owner, though concerns had been raised that the dog was dangerous. There is some dispute over the type of dog it was that killed the man, though neighbors of the dog’s owner say it was a pit bull, a breed that has been banned in the UK.

It makes no sense to potentially expose the public to a dog known to have killed a person by releasing the dog back to the same individual who owned the dog when the fatal incident occurred. More than 30 fatal dog attacks have been occurring in the U.S. annually in recent years. Our laws need to change, in order to address this ominous threat.

–Guest Contributor

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