By CARL SMITH
A pit bull attack in Oktibbeha County left two children injured and a dog dead Saturday.
Chief Deputy George Carrithers said deputies were dispatched at approximately 3:47 p.m. Saturday to 2796 Self Creek Road after a 911 call was placed. He said the caller, Katie Riehle, told dispatchers her children had been bitten by a neighbor’s dogs.
When deputies arrived, they found two children, ages 4 and 10 years old, with multiple injuries
“They had bites and scratches from head to toe,” Carrithers said. “One of the (children’s injuries) looked real serious.”
The status of the two children was unknown at time of press, but Carrithers said both were transported to Oktibbeha County Hospital. Carrithers said the oldest child was later transported to University Medical Center in Jackson.
Deputies went to the owner’s house, located at 1210 Charlottes Way, and approximately five pit bulls approached the officers. Carrithers said a deputy shot and killed one of the animals after it approached the officer in an aggressive manner. After the pit bull was shot, the other dogs ran toward the house.
At the time of the incident, Carrithers said the dogs’ owners were not at home, but were able to place three of them in cages once on scene. The fourth dog, he said, was secured after owners summoned it from nearby woods.
Rich McKee, an animal control officer with the Starkville Police Department, was summoned to the scene and transported the dogs to the city for holding. McKee could not comment on the dogs’ future because of the differences in city and county animal control policies. He said Starkville’s division of animal control assists the county when asked.
“If they were caught in the city, we’d ask that they all be deemed dangerous since we really don’t know which one or ones attacked the children,” he said. “We’d have a hearing, but if they were allowed to go back to their owners, they would have to follow strict city ordinances for housing these animals. If this was in my jurisdiction, I would wish heavily for these dogs not to be returned.”
Carrithers said the incident is still under investigation and a decision will be made “in the best interest of the neighborhood.”
“I don’t think these dogs will be going home,” Carrithers said. “We will handle this situation according to the law.”