Society

Owner Of Dog That Attacked Four-Year-Old Faces Criminal Charges

| by Will Hagle
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A family was attacked by a dog after pulling over to the side of a country road to help the animal out of the street.

Samantha Anderson-Graham, a 38-year-old mother of four, claims that the Lakeland terrier jumped into her vehicle when she opened the door and began viciously attacking her four-year-old daughter, Tilly. According to the Daily Mail, Tilly was bitten 25 times in several areas on her body throughout the duration of the attack. Her 12-year-old brother Joe was also in the car, but avoided the attack. Anderson-Graham was also bitten during the attack. 

“The dog was on top of her, mauling her, and she was just screaming. When I managed to get her out the car and into my arms he was jumping up and with every jumped he bit her again and again. At one point the dog was actually hanging off her bottom and I had to punch it to unlock its jaw,” Anderson-Graham said. 

Anderson-Graham has criticized local law enforcement officials for refusing to investigate the incident. She filed a formal complaint against Suffolk Constabulary and police have acknowledged the incident, but that’s been the extent of their help thus far. 

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“How can they say that a dog mauling a four-year-old girl is not a case? I’ve lost all faith in the police. It’s disgusting,” Anderson-Graham said. 

Anderson-Graham’s persistence ultimately led investigators to charge the dog’s 50 year-old-owner, Trevor Edwards, with two counts of owning a dog that caused injury. He plead guilty, and the court mandated that the dog be put to sleep. Edwards was also forced to pay roughly $3,000 in damages to the family. 

The Suffolk police issued a statement acknowledging their mistake in initially ignoring Anderson-Graham’s claims, stating, “When this incident was first reported to police, the initial assessment of the officer who attended was that no criminal offenses had taken place. A subsequent review of the circumstances found that the case warranted further police investigation, and as a result the owner of the dog was reported for a summons to court. We hope that the victims are happy with the outcome of the court hearing and regret any distress caused over the initial handling of this case, which is currently being reviewed.”

Sources: The Daily Mail, The Suffolk Free-Press / Photo Credit: The Daily Mail