It is important to be alert when interacting with any dog, regardless of familiarity or the dog’s breed or size. Dogs may attack for many reasons, including misrepresentation of body language, hunger or agitation due to neglect. Children are especially vulnerable. Dog attacks can cause serious injuries such as cuts, scars, disfigurement, disability, emotional trauma, and even wrongful death. In such an event, the advice of an expert Massachusetts dog bite attorney is particularly helpful.
In 2013, Lisa Hal and her two grandchildren were attacked by two pitbulls that were owned by a neighbor, Sheri Speer. Hall was walking past Speer’s house with Marquice Jr., 9 months old, and Marlene, who was almost 5 at the time. Hall alleges that the two dogs crossed the street toward them and initially lunged towards Marquice Jr. They knocked over his stroller and caused an injury to his eye. Marlene tried to protect her brother and put her arm in between the dog and the 9-month-old child. Marlene suffered a broken arm and deep soft tissue injuries. Another child, Audrena, ran inside the house unharmed. She allegedly suffers from emotional effects such as reccurring nightmares and a fear of dogs.
According to The Bulletin, Marquice Downing, the father of the two children, has filed a lawsuit against Speer in New London, Connecticut Superior Court. Downing alleges that the dog attack has left his children with permanent emotional and physical damage. Downing is seeking $15,000 in damages. Speer was charged with two counts of having unlicensed dogs and having nuisance dogs with a vicious disposition. Furthermore, she was charged with one count of failing to get a required rabies vaccination for one of the pitbulls. Randall Ortega is representing the Downing family in this case.