Lexi Hudson, 4, was mauled to death by a dog her mother had rescued from an animal-charity just a few weeks ago, a neighbor told ITV News Central. The dog was believed to be a French Mastiff—a breed made famous in ‘Turner and Hooch.’ a 1989 film starring Tom Hanks.
Lexi Hudson was “shaken like a rag doll” as her mother, Jodi, 31, desperately tried to free her from the jaws of the animal, the Daily Mirror reports.
Finally, Jodi desperately picked up a knife and stabbed the dog to death before she ran screaming from her apartment in Mountsorrel, covered in blood, friends say. (Mountsorrel is in the English Midlands.)
They said the family had only owned the dog – believed to be a Dogue de Bordeaux-- for a matter of weeks after getting it from an animal rescue center.
Lexi was Jodi’s only child and friends say that her death is particularly tragic because Lexi had survived after being born three months premature, and weighing only 1-pound, 10-ounces.
Samantha Clarke, 26, said she was horrified as she watched Jodi, 30, run into the street and she was screaming, and I tried to comfort her. It’s so sad - and shocking.”
Arthur Nash, 67, another neighbor, said: “I saw Jodi after it happened. Apparently she stabbed the dog to death. “She was standing in the parking lot, covered in blood. “I held her hand for a little while,” he said, “but she was totally gone. She was in complete and utter shock.”
“Lexi was in an ambulance while the paramedics worked on her and the helicopter ambulance was circling overhead,” he said.
Ambulance crews rushed the girl to the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham at around 12:15 p.m. on Tuesday, November 5, but she died of her injuries.
Another friend, Paul Ryan, told the Mirror, “I saw Jodi as they were taking Lexi away to hospital - she was in hysterics. She kept saying that she was told that the dog was safe around children. She’s only had the dog for two months.
“She picked it up from the pound - it was a dog that had suffered abuse in the past but she said it had a very soft nature. Lexi was always playing with it.”
“It’s obviously a huge dog and Lexi wouldn’t have stood a chance if it went for her - she’s such a small little girl,” Ryan said, “Jodi used to try and walk the dog on a lead, but it would struggle and it pulled her over a few times. She would never have dreamt in a million years that something like this could have happened.”
The dog died within minutes after the incident, Glenn Shepphard, 36, said: “I saw Jodi outside with blood and mud up her arm crying outside and mud all up her legs. “She had obviously tried to wrestle with the dog. She asked me to come across to see the new dog a couple of weeks ago.”
“It was a very big dog, he said, a type I have never seen before. It just sat on the sofa and barked at me - it was loud but didn’t seem aggressive.”
.Darren Price, 32, who lived a few doors away, said dogs are banned from their estate. I am a father-of-two and for this to happen so close to home is horrible. It could have been anyone’s children.”
“I’m pretty sure that dogs are not allowed on the estate, I believe it is because there are a lot of elderly people who live here and children too.
“The dog was fairly new, they only had the one pet, I’m not sure where it came from but obviously they shouldn’t have had it here and it is a terrible tragedy.”
Male mastiffs can weigh up to 150lb and stand 2 feet tall at the shoulder.
Lily Parks, 87, who lives near the family, said: ‘It was an enormous dog, but the little girl was very fond of it.’ Lexi had only started school in September, according to Metro News.
Leicestershire Police were conducting interviews at the scene and investigations are at their very early stages.” They say they don’t believe the dog was an illegal breed.
Under the Dangerous Dogs Act four breeds are banned in the UK;
- Pit Bull Terrier
- Japanese Tosa
- Dogo Argentino
- Fila Braziliero