10/12/2006

Texas officer shoots dog that attacked girl

Kevin Moran, Staff
The Houston Chronicle
Copyright 2006 The Houston Chronicle Publishing Company
All Rights Reserved

A police officer shot a dog that attacked and severely wounded a 2-year-old Dickinson child on Monday.

The little girl was bitten "everywhere,"said Sgt. Jay Jaekel, who shot the dog at a trailer home where the child was being cared for by an aunt.

The aunt had managed to free the toddler from the dog - a pit-bull mix - and run into the home.

"There were puncture wounds to the face, lacerations to the back and to the groin area," Jaekel said. "It kind of shook up some of the EMS guys."

The officer said he is not sure whether the single shot he fired into the dog's chest area killed it or whether animal control officials later euthanized it.

Jaekel said the child was taken by helicopter to Hermann Memorial Hospital and was reported to be in surgery for serious wounds. The unidentified girl's condition was unknown late Monday.

The girl wandered near the dog while it was attached to chain on the front porch of the trailer home in the 3500 block of Ohio Street, Jaekel said.

The dog was accidentally freed from the chain while the child's aunt tried to get the girl away from the dog, Jaekel said.

"The only thing I can speculate is that the child went up to pet the dog," Jaekel said. "When the aunt came out, she tried to beat the dog off and somehow during that struggle, the dog came off the chain.

"She was able to scoop the child up and get inside until we got there," Jaekel said.

Jaekel said he opened fire after the dog charged at him. 

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