OHIO -- A 5-year-old girl mauled by an Akita required more than 200 stitches, family members say.
But it wasn’t the first time the dog attacked a child. Now, her parents are questioning the state’s dog laws.
Adara was bitten Tuesday while she was with her mother, Gretchen Smith, visiting a friend on Groop Road near Springfield.
“I’m on the computer, I hear some growling,” Smith said. Then, “I’m screaming, no, no, no, no, no.”
Adara had seven lacerations, from 2 to 4 inches long.
“You could actually see her scalp and skull,” Smith said.
The dog apparently has a previous bite history.
“I had no idea that this dog previously bit the grandson of the owner’s face and gave it 42 stitches, and they never put it down then,” Smith said.
The Clark County Sheriff’s Office responded and took a report, but could not seize the dog because the attack happened inside its home. The previous incident involved a family member, so authorities didn’t need to step in.
“Because of the extent of the injuries, we are going to deem the dog vicious,” said James Straley, director of the Humane Society Serving Clark County.
However, there is a question whether the laws apply when the incident happens inside, Straley said.
“We’re trying to figure out whether the dog can be under control or out of control while in a house with a family member there and with an invited guest, that’s where the legal snafu is.”
The case now is in the hands of prosecutors to decide whether to file charges or seek to euthanize the dog. Meanwhile, the dog’s owner wants to keep her pet.
Michael Sullins, the girl’s stepfather, and Smith said they don’t agree with the family keeping the dog.
“I think he needs to be put down,” Sullins said. “They’re still standing up for the dog, saying it wasn’t his fault.”
(WHIO - Jul 29, 2015)