Charlotte Carter, an 82-year-old woman, was seriously injured after three of her neighbor’s pit bulls attacked and mauled her. According to an ABC 22 news report, the incident occurred in Montgomery County the night of February 24, 2013 in the victim’s own backyard.
Carter’s son, Chris, told officials that he ran out to the backyard when he heard his mother screaming. All three dogs were on top of her. Carter said he had to “do everything” just to save his mother’s life.
Charlotte Carter suffered major injuries. The dogs ripped off chunks of flesh off her legs, arms and face. Hers son was eventually able to kick the dogs and pry their jaws off her body. The dogs even shredded the victim’s coat.
Chris Carter said that the three dogs got into their yard through a small hole in the fence. The Carters say they are terrified because the dogs continue to live next door. They have been quarantined in the home. Animal Control officials say that they must wait and go through the process before removing the dogs from the owner. If the dogs are determined to be “vicious,” the owner can be charged with a misdemeanor.
Dog Bite Statistics
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that about 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year. Almost one in five of those who are bitten – about 885,000 — require medical attention for dog bite injuries. In the year 2006, more than 31,000 people underwent reconstructive surgery as a result of being bitten by dogs.
Responsibility of Dog Owners
Based on this news report, it appears that the pit bulls entered the victim’s yard through a hole in the fence. It is not clear why the dog owner did not repair the hole and for how long the hole had remained unrepaired. Like California, Ohio, where this incident occurred, has a strict liability statute when it comes to dog attacks. This means that dog owners in Ohio can be held liable for injuries and damages caused by their pets.
Compensation for Dog Bite Victims
Injured victims of pit bulls attacks can seek compensation for cover damages including but not limited to medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, surgeries, pain and suffering and emotional distress. Dog owners have a responsibility to follow leash laws and keep their animals secured in their yards. Anyone who has been injured in a dog attack would be well advised to contact an experienced personal injury lawyer who will fight for their rights, hold the negligent dog owner liable and help victims secure fair compensation for their losses.