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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.

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A Rescued Pit Bull Kills a Woman in her 90s Hours After Adoption

Wednesday, June 7th, 2017

English: American Staffordshire Terrier Deutsc...

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

A fatal pit bull attack occurred in Virginia Beach, Virginia, the night of May 31, 2017. The family had adopted the dog just hours before the horrific incident. Police officers were contacted about the dog attack at about 7:30 p.m. Upon arrival, they discovered that the victim was suffering from life-threatening injuries. She was quickly transported to a nearby hospital, where she underwent several surgeries. One of her arms had to be amputated. Sadly, she did not survive the surgeries; she died the following day.

The victim’s daughter said she was in the backyard with the newly adopted pit bull, and she removed the shock and canvas collars. She then realized she had been locked out of the house. When she called her mother, she had fallen and said she couldn’t get up. The daughter broke a window pane with a hammer to get into the home. She says the dog ran past her and began mauling her mother on her arms and then her abdomen and thighs. The daughter tried hitting the dog with the hammer and with a skillet, but the dog was not deterred from attacking. She later said the attack didn’t stop until the elderly woman in her 90s stopped screaming. At one point, the daughter was bitten on the arm.

The dog had previously been in a shelter and identified as a biter. He was rescued and ended up with this family. The new owner said that she had never seen anything like the gruesome attack.

This tragic incident is like so many others, when people are convinced that pit bulls can be perfectly safe for adoption only for disasters like this one to occur.

–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 Pit Bull Snaps Leash, Hops a Fence, and Viciously Attacks a Toddler in a Playground

Wednesday, April 5th, 2017

English: Second dogs first smile. Happy Pit Bull.

English: Second dogs first smile. Happy Pit Bull. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A pit bull mix broke his leash, jumped a playground fence, and savagely attacked a toddler April 4, 2017, in Chatham in the U.K. At least six other children were covered in blood, as the dog bit and shook the baby by her head. Some of the children who witnessed the disturbing attack tried to rescue the baby from the dog’s jaws. Another child was reportedly attacked by the same dog just a few hours before this happened. Apparently, the United States isn’t the only place where pit bulls attack and are then left with the owner to do further harm.

The victim was seriously injured in the pit bull attack. She was airlifted to a South London hospital, to receive care in the neurological unit there. At last report, she was in serious condition at the hospital. The dog died in area of the attack, having been shot by police officers.

A neighbor in the area said the same dog attacked her 3-year-old son a few hours before the playground attack occurred. She said the dog jumped on top of her son, which scratched his leg. She said someone immediately grabbed the dog, rescuing her son. The woman was distraught, saying her son was terrified and she recognized that it could have been worse, as it was for the little girl, who was seen bleeding heavily from bites on her head.

People in the region were already disturbed by an incident in a nearby community that occurred on Sunday involving five bulldogs. Up to 50 children watched that day as the five dogs terrorized shoppers and attacked two people. Three of the dogs were shot and killed by police officers in full view of the same witnesses.

Dogs may be fantastic pets, but there are too many incidents when they do harm to children and people of literally all ages. Stricter laws are needed that will hold dog owners fully responsible, when their dogs cause injuries or fatalities.

–Guest Contributor

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An 8-month-old Boy is Killed by the Family Pit Bull

Wednesday, April 5th, 2017

Pit bull

Pit bull (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A pit bull that a family in Lusby, Maryland, raised from the time he was a puppy fatally attacked the family’s 8-month-old baby boy on Thursday, March 23, 2017. Police were called to the scene and arrived almost immediately, at approximately 1 p.m.  A family friend had been babysitting the child when the fatal pit bull attack occurred “out of the blue.” She called the police after an unsuccessful attempt to rescue the infant. The dog was still attacking the baby when police arrived. They shot the pit bull, to stop the horrific attack. The baby was pronounced dead at the scene. The family friend suffered minor injuries and was taken to the hospital.

Officials said the entire community is in a state of shock. The devastated family had the dog for approximately 7 years. They said the pit bull had no history of aggression.

Calvert County Sheriff Mike Evans addressed the community and said the baby had been around the pit bull all of his life.

Tom Hejl, Calvert County Commissioners’ President, has indicated since the attack that he supports breed-specific pit bull restrictions. He also expressed hope that legislators in Congress will give consideration to pit bull legislation.

The nature of the attack was quite shocking, since the pit bull didn’t just bite the infant. Without warning, he attacked and continued attacking until being shot and killed.

Since 2005, there have been four fatal pit bull attacks in Maryland. See this continuing series for information about failed actions taken in Maryland to restrict the breed. The title will be “A Family Pit Bull Kills an Infant in a Sudden Attack.”

–Guest Contributor

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Dogs that Nearly Killed a Young Man Last Year Still Not Surrendered

Wednesday, March 15th, 2017

3.5 year old Brindle Pit Bull Terrier

3.5 year old Brindle Pit Bull Terrier (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On July 2, 2016, 22-year-old Mitchell Slayden rode his bicycle to an address where a friend of his formerly lived, and it almost cost him his life. In Graves County, Kentucky, Slayden entered the driveway where he believed his friend was. Two pit bulls being kept without restraint at the home viciously attacked him as he tried to leave the property. After being discovered with life-threatening injuries, Slayden was airlifted to a Nashville, Tennessee, hospital. He received extensive treatment  for lacerations to his head, face, arms, and legs. The dogs were quarantined for 10 days and later returned to the owner.

Slayden’s dad gave more graphic details of what happened that day. He said that he discovered his bloodied son in a ditch across from the home he had tried to visit. Slayden was literally covered in dog bites. He has undergone a series of reconstructive surgeries and skin grafts, including repair to his damaged scalp.

As a result of the near deadly pit bull attack on Slayden, the pit bull owner was not penalized in any way, according to an investigation by DogsBite.org. The dogs were released back to his custody, but the owner has allegedly not kept his commitment to keep his pit bulls out of Graves County.

This month a jury in Kentucky found the pit bull owner guilty of harboring a vicious animal. He was not sentenced to any jail time, although the County Attorney had requested a maximum sentence of 60 days in jail. Instead, the man was sentenced to pay a fine of $200. In addition, the dogs are expected to be released to the owner on a future date.

In Texas, same as Kentucky, there doesn’t seem to be enough incentive in the law for people to be careful about protecting the public from pit bulls. This breed has killed one person approximately every two weeks over the past 5 to 10 years. Pit bulls have won the hearts of families across the nation, but there is overwhelming evidence that they are too dangerous and should be banned. Otherwise, more horrific incidents like what Slayden suffered will continue to happen.

–Guest Contributor

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A 5-year-old Boy is Mauled to Death by Family Dogs

Thursday, February 23rd, 2017

English Mastiff

English Mastiff (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In Clarksville, Tennessee, on Thursday, February 16, 2017, a 5-year-old boy was brutally attacked by the family’s two English Mastiffs. At about 8:20 that morning, emergency personnel responded to the home, after receiving a 9-1-1 call. The child was quickly transported to Tennova Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead. No further details have been released about this fatal dog attack, other than the fact that the dogs were both under a year old and now in custody of the animal services department

The boy killed last week was the fourth person in 2017 to be killed by one or more dogs. On January 17, a 6-year-old boy in Atlanta, Georgia, died after being brutally attacked by two to three dogs as he was walking to school; one of the dogs was a pit bull and the other breeds are still unknown. That same day, a 2-month-old in San Marcos, Texas, was killed by the family dog, a German shepherd. On Monday, February 13, a 75-year-old woman was viciously attacked by her own dog, a Mastiff she had owned for at least six years; and she died from her injuries.

Deadly dog attacks happen probably more frequently than many people realize. DogsBite.org is a website that tracks information about dog fatalities and other serious dog attacks. The website tracks information that was previously recorded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The government no longer tracks information about fatal dog attacks, but DogsBite.org does.

Based on the number of dog attacks that occur in the U.S. every year, a person is killed by a dog, on average, about once every two weeks or so. Children and the elderly are the most vulnerable age groups, but healthy grown males are also sometimes killed by dogs.

The public hardly hears anything about these fatal dog attacks. Perhaps it’s time to bring this problem to light; it could possibly help to save lives.

–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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Dallas Attorney – Trauma Center Dog Bite Studies Reveal the Truth about Pit Bulls

Wednesday, October 12th, 2016

American Pit bull Terrier (Schatzi)

American Pit bull Terrier (Schatzi) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Since 2009, at least ten peer-reviewed studies show that pit bull injuries occur at a higher frequency than all other dog breeds, in level 1 trauma centers. Hospital records reviewed for purposes of a making conclusions were taken from level 1 trauma centers because they are the facilities where patients are often treated when their injuries are severe. The most conspicuous conclusions to be drawn are that pit bulls create the highest need for surgical intervention and they also cause injuries of a higher severity.

A review was conducted of 551 dog bite incidents treated at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia over a five-year period beginning in 2009. Of the cases in which the dog breed was known, pit bulls were responsible for injuries 51% of the time. Part of the significance of this percentage is that pit bulls only make up about 7% of the dog population in the U.S., at most.

At a trauma center in Atlanta, Georgia, it was found that pit bulls are more than 2.5 times more likely to bite in multiple anatomical locations, as compared with other dog breeds. In addition, pit bull attacks resulted in a higher risk of death, higher injury severity score, and higher costs associated with hospitalization than other breeds.

An important conclusion drawn by a Pediatric Level 1 Trauma Center in Phoenix, Arizona, was that dog familiarity does not confer safety, where pit bulls are concerned. These findings have tremendous relevance in connection with child safety.

The closer anyone looks at the facts related to pit bulls and the injuries and fatalities the breed causes, the more obvious it is that legislation is greatly needed, to protect members of society, including pit bull owners who are unconvinced of the dangers posed by the breed.

–Guest Contributor

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A Postal Worker is Brutally Attacked by a Pit Bull

Wednesday, August 10th, 2016

A USPS van on Cambridge Street in Harvard Squa...

A USPS van on Cambridge Street in Harvard Square (Cambridge, Massachusetts).” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mail carriers are specially trained on how to deal with dog attacks, but nothing could have prepared Craig De Lashmit for the pit bull encounter he had on Friday, July 29, 2016. De Lashmit was making his rounds, delivering mail in Southeast Wichita, Kansas, on Bellaire Street when he was suddenly in a fight for his life. He had just delivered mail to someone’s home when he turned to see a pit bull. The dog gave no warning. There were no barks or growls. De Lashmit was trained to use his postal bag as a shield from dog bites, but the maneuver was no help in this situation.

De Lashmit said the pit bull launched an attack, lunging up and going straight for his arm. The dog attack victim was knocked backwards to the ground. De Lashmit seems to remember every detail of the attack. The pit bull backed up for moment, he said, and then bit his leg. The postal worker then realized he was being attacked and not just bitten.

De Lashmit kicked the pit bull and got back on his feet, but the dog was biting and pulling him. De Lashmit screamed help repeatedly throughout the ordeal. Finally, the dog’s owner and another man arrived to help. The dog was brought under control, and a Good Samaritan wrapped his injured arm in a t-shirt.

After being quickly transported to a local hospital, De Lashmit got 26 stitches on his arms and legs from the pit bull attack.

The pit bull owner told police that the dog was trained to protect his family. He said that the dog was not going to return to that neighborhood, however, because he wanted to make sure the pit bull harmed no one else.

In the meantime, as a result of the attack, neighbors in the vicinity must temporarily get their mail at the post office. A centralized mailbox is being installed for the neighborhood, for safety purposes.

The Post Master in Wichita urged citizens to keep their dogs restrained and away from mailboxes and areas where postal workers walk to make their deliveries.

Read this ongoing series to learn about cities in Texas and where they stand as far as places that are most dangerous for mail carriers, based on dog bite statistics.

–Guest Contributor

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