Police: Girl, 6, Mauled To Death By Pit Bulls | WDIV

HAMTRAMCK, Mich. — Police said a 6-year-old girl was mauled to death by two pit bulls outside a Hamtramck home Monday morning.
The girl’s family was in the process of moving from their home on Belmont Street to a house one block away when the family’s dogs somehow broke loose and attacked the girl, police said.

Neighbors said they heard the pit bulls barking, the girl crying, and the child’s mother screaming.
“She was beating on the door trying to get some help from anybody,” said a woman who lives in the area.
Neighbors then reported hearing several shots.
Police responding to the scene distracted the dogs, but were forced to shoot and kill the pit bulls after they lunged at officers, according to Local 4 reports.
The girl’s cousin, Renaisa Chaney, said the child’s death is the second loss the family has recently suffered.
“The messed up part about it is (the girl’s) father passed not too long ago, so for her mother to go through something else like this again, it just really hurts everybody,” Chaney said.
The Michigan State Police taped off the area as the child’s body remained at the scene at about noon, according to the station’s reports.

22 thoughts on “Police: Girl, 6, Mauled To Death By Pit Bulls | WDIV

  1. Every compassionate, animal-loving bone in my body is challenged every time I see a pit bull.

    This is insanity.

    Having a good day until now,


  2. Yes, the family owned the two PBs. We heard that the Dad recently died and we’re guessing they were his.

    I scoured some pro-pit sites and they’re all saying that PBs bite less often than labs. The problem with this analysis is that labs usually stop before they kill somebody.

  3. Yeah, sharks bite a lot less often than minnows.

    I’ll take a few thousand nibbles over one Pit bite. I love Pits as dogs, but not as pets near children. Hell, any terrier. Our Jack Russell mix tried to carry off a neighbor’s kid once. Pits were not bred as pets.

  4. People whose dogs kill ought to go to jail. Seriously. If you can go to jail for killing someone because you’re driving wrecklessly, you should be able to go to jail for killing by being wreckless with a pet. This coming from someone who’s been a life-long dog owner and who generally thinks people get way too excited about dog bites.

  5. My first thought was prosecution too but the more I thought on the issue the more I realized that I was seeking vengance not justice. And justice is impossible in this case.

    This woman’s lost her husband, her daughter, and the dogs. I’m not sure putting her in prison would do anybody any good. Whom does it protect? Whom does it serve? The daughter, the dog’s owners?

    I’m not sure locking people up solves any problems.

  6. If anything, she should appear in commercials warning of the danger in having a pit bull as a pet. The local paper said it took 20 shots by police to kill both dogs.

    I’m more worried by the free-roaming packs of “ghetto dogs” than those with owners. Hamtramck is in sore need of a dog catcher.

  7. Steven Cherry for dog catcher!

    Seriously, though. What I found disturbing was a passage from the Detroit News story that described the dogs as escaping from the basement of the house and then attacking the children in the yard. This seems like evidence of animal cruelty to me.

    I’m in no hurry to throw anybody in jail, but I’d like to see a great deal of community service for whoever is determined to be the owners of these dogs, and all of it should be spent working with Michigan Anti-cruelty, Michigan Humane Society, the ASPCA and the like. Anything to stop the cycle of abuse and violence.

    This would serve two functions, one that benefits society and animals, and two, knowing positive steps are being taken to somehow ebb the tide of evil, it might be therapeutic for the mother and family of the victim.

  8. The mother of the victim was the owner of the dogs. Her husband recently died, so maybe they were his at one point?

  9. “This seems like evidence of animal cruelty to me.”

    I don’t think putting your dogs in the basement qualifies as cruelty. Lots of people cage-train dogs.

    Also, pit bulls don’t have to be mistreated for them to kill. I think that’s a common misconception that well treated pit bulls won’t become killers. I’d like to see people stop supporting that myth.

  10. Forgive me for perpetuating a myth; part of me wants to believe that a well cared-for pit would be non-violent, or at least have a good shot at not attacking a human.

    But assuming pit bulls are dangerous regardless of their condition of care, what is your position on a ban on pit bulls?

  11. Banning a specific breed of dog doesn’t hold up under federal law. The second it’s voted in the city would be sued and would likely lose. The only legal option for cities is creating a “dangerous dog” law.

    I wouldn’t vote for a pit bull ban because I don’t believe it would actually prevent people from owning the dogs.

    I don’t think passing unenforcable laws does anything but waste time and our tax money. If the city was able to follow up on animal control complaints this would likely never have happened. The dog’s been loose before and neighbors complained, our current laws didn’t protect anyone.

    I think there are enough laws already on the books concerning dangerous animals. We can pass all the laws we want but until we agree to enforce the ones we have we’re going to continue to have problems.

    Legally, responsibility comes down to the dog’s owner, cruelty or not. People need to be responsile, it’s what our law says, and I think it’s enough.

    Perhaps an education campaign is more fitting. Obviously certain people are not aware of the possible dangers of certain large breeds yet they take on the responsiblity anyway.

    Link discussing Michigan law, Pit Bulls, and other dangerous dogs

  12. Got any good links to dangerous dog laws? How do they avoid the pifalls of a specific breed ban? And most important, are they enforceable?

    Education is cetainly the key. I hope the schools are seizing on this. I know there’s talk of a “dangerous animal summit” in the works around involving council, hopefully the mayor’s office and other more relavant agencies/experts, and of course, the public.

    Dangerous animal summit. Sounds like a good title for a battle of the bands, doesn’t it?

  13. I don’t really have any info on dangerous dog laws and I don’t know what to say about enforceablity. Laws don’t keep people from making bad decisions. They only serve to punish “bad” behavior.

    I heard about the summit during the Council meeting. I predict nothing productive coming out of it. I do support adding an animial control officer to the city payroll. I think it’s more important than an EDD.

  14. “Dangerous animal summit” sounds a little like a monster truck rally or pro wrestling battle royale.

  15. “I don’t think passing unenforcable laws does anything but waste time and our tax money.”

    You really said a mouthful, with that statement, Steven.

    Passing unenforcable ordinances has pretty much been standard practice in this city, for awhile now. Selective enforcement is another issue.

    Back to dangerous dogs, though…

    If I’m not mistaken, former councilman Justewicz’s been pressing the city council about the need for an animal control officer. He says it’s required by state law.

  16. I agree about the menace of unenforceable laws, and I applaud good, sound skepticism. You mentioned education as a key to addressing the pit bull menace. What eduational measures would you take?

  17. This almost seems off topic now, but I found this paper called “The Emergence of Instict” about the effects of evolution on instictive behavior. Very thought provoking in the context of pit bulls.


    About education, Mike… every news report about a dog mauling is an opportunity to prevent another. Local news didn’t give a word of advice. Public service announcements would be good. Maybe information booklets at vets. How to prevent serious injury in a mauling, methods of ending a dog mauling, and why dogs are a poor choice for personal defense should all be covered.

  18. First of all she didn’t lose a husband, she lost a boyfriend. The dogs belong to her new boyfriend that lives with her. She should not have had the dogs around her children. Why was the children walking alone in the alley? Where was this boyfriend? Somebody needs to go to jail.

  19. TV news reported that the child had known the dogs since they were puppies and that the husband had died. Who did they talk to?

    Not that it matters. According to the Citizen, neighbors said, “the dogs had a history of escaping from their yard and menacing the neighborhood.” I’m sure charges will be filed if that’s the case.

Comments are closed.