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Loopholes upset woman after pit bull attack

Dog injured protecting owner, daughter

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Evening strolls in the neighborhood have come to an end for Breanne Smith.

"We're not going to be taking our child or our dog on a walk," she said. "We don't feel like the streets are safe."

On Wednesday, Breanne took her one-year-old daughter and 90-lb German shepherd Kodiak for a walk in the 5200 block of Village Haven.

"All of a sudden I heard an awful noise, growling, looked up and there was an enormous pit bull running straight for us," said Smith. "The dog hit me from behind and knocked me to the ground completely. Grabbed me by the arm but the only mark I have is a bruise on my arm."

Her dog Kodiak was not so lucky, receiving several deep wounds from the pit bull as it defended Breanne and her daughter.

"I remember the thought going through my head was that if Kodiak my dog dies, we're dead," she said.

Her screams were finally heard by other neighbors who managed to get the pit bull away before the dog's owner eventually opened his door to let the dog inside.

"He wasn't every apologetic. His words were, 'I'm sorry we'll cover it' but he didn't actually say 'I'm sorry.' He seemed more concerned with maybe losing his dog. I'm sure he loves his dog but not as much as I love my child," Smith said.

Breanne said the owners moved in this summer and other neighbors, like Jackie Williams who lives next door to the pit bull have had altercations with the dog.

"When the neighbors first moved in, the second day, the dog tried to break through the fence, the privacy fence, to get at our dog, a small little dog," said Williams who no longer lets his children play in the backyard unless he is outside as well. "I would hate for us to have some major accident happen for the police to actually step up and do something about it."

Breanne filed a police report and animal control officials attempted to speak with the dog owner but according to Smith, the owner did not open the door to speak with them. Police told her that if the dog had broken her skin, they could have legally taken the dog away. But as long as the dog is inside the home or fence, they are powerless.

"He has to either voluntarily give it up or the next process is to have it deemed a dangerous dog officially," said Smith.

The wife of the pit bull's owner said her husband put in a reinforced fence Friday morning and has a court date on Monday because of a citation for the dog getting loose. Breanne said vet bills for her dog are over $600 and she's hoping the pit bull owner will help with the expenses.

For a list of recent stories Charles Gonzalez has done, click here.