A professional dog walker in Santa Monica, California, has been charged with child endangerment after a 4-year-old girl was bitten by a Pit Bull under the woman’s care, police officials said Tuesday evening, November 12.
Rebecca McGroerty, 26, was caring for the 10-year-old Staffordshire Terrier and was reportedly given detailed instructions by the dog owner to keep the dog muzzled and on a leash at all times if it was outside of the house.
The owner states McGroerty was also told that the dog was afraid and aggressive toward small children, according to Santa Monica Police officials.
"The dog was not muzzled and was off leash at the time of the attack," Sgt. Jay Moroso said in a statement.
"McGroerty's employer gave her instructions that she was not to have anyone other than employees or residents enter the house," Moroso said.
The attack occurred inside the dog owner's home in the 2300 block of 23rd Street on October 19, after the girl had been allowed by McGroerty to come inside, reports the L.A. Times. The girl did not live there.
The girl suffered injuries to her leg that required stitches. She was later released to her parents, the Santa Monica Daily Press reports.
The 10-year-old Pit Bull was impounded by Santa Monica Animal Control and was quarantined for ten days before being released back to its owner.
Muzzle and leash restrictions were placed on the dog; however, they were already voluntarily being used by the owner prior to the incident, police said.
McGroerty is scheduled for arraignment on Nov. 26 at the Airport courthouse.