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Police & Fire

Dog Attacks 3-Year-Old In Spring Valley

North Cole Avenue where a three-year-old boy was attacked by a pit bull.
North Cole Avenue where a three-year-old boy was attacked by a pit bull. Photo Credit: Google Maps

A 3-year-old boy was attacked by a pit bull on Thursday in Rockland County, biting the child in the face and neck areas, according to the Spring Valley Police.

A graphic video and photo of the incident have sparked a strong response on social media.

When Spring Valley Police arrived on scene at North Cole Avene around 6 p.m., the child was being attended to by an Hatzolah ambulance crew and there was no sign of the dog, said Chief Paul Modica. 

An investigation revealed that the dog owner’s child had opened a door and inadvertently let the family dog outside. The dog ran out, then chased and bit the child, who had been playing outside, Modica said. 

The victim was bitten multiple times until adults in the area intervened, police said.

The dog’s vaccinations appeared to be up to date and it was transported by police to a local animal shelter for evaluation, he added.

The owner was given an appearance ticket at the scene for not having the required insurance on the dog,  but other charges may be forthcoming pending the complete investigation, Modica said.

The attack, which was captured on video by a surveillance camera at a home across the street from the incident, shows the child try to run away but is attacked a second time before two or three people chase the dog away. 

A video and tweets about the attack were posted on Twitter by the Orthodox Jewish Public Affairs Council Hudson Valley showing the attack. The group later tweeted a photo of the boy with his injuries.

Chelsea Clinton tweeted in response: "Horrific. No child should suffer this. No animal (or person) should ever be in a position to do this to anyone, certainly not a child."

The organization said on Twitter that the dog had gotten loose before and been reported to the Spring Valley Police, but no action had been taken. 

A records check revealed one prior dog complaint received by the police department on all of North Cole Avenue in the past year. During that one incident, the dog was gone before patrols arrived on the scene, Modica said.

The case has been turned over to the Rockland District Attorney's Office for review.

Check back to Daily Voice for updates.

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