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Report Filed by AAF Correspondent: C.W.
from San Francisco Chronicle

    Boy mauled in savage pit bull attack

Tuesday, June 19, 2001 (06-19) 15:45 PDT

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- Three pit bulls savagely attacked a 10-year-old boy who was riding a bicycle his parents had just given him for making the honor roll at school.

The dogs ripped off both the boy's ears and left bite wounds all over his face, arms and upper body, police said Tuesday.

Sean Jones was in critical condition at Children's Hospital in Oakland after 31/2 hours of surgery following the Monday night attack in nearby Richmond.


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Both his ears were completely severed and he lost nearly all the skin and muscles on both sides of his face, according to Dr. James Betts who added the boy would be hospitalized for at least a month. It took about four hours just to clean the wounds, Betts said.

Sean was riding a bicycle he had just been given by his mother, Lisa Iris and his stepfather, Daryl Iris, when the dogs pounced at about 7:30 p.m. They knocked him off the bike and repeatedly bit him.

Police Sgt. Enos Johnson said Benjamin Moore, 27, and Jacinda Lynn Knight, 33, both of Richmond, were arrested on suspicion of keeping dogs that cause injury or mayhem. The couple, which owned the dogs, was being held Tuesday on $115,000 bail.

Moore told police he abandoned two of the dogs in Oakland and one in Richmond after the attack, but authorities believe the dogs, two males and one female, are hidden.

If the dogs are not found in the next day or so, doctors will begin treating the boy for rabies.

Belinda Arnett, the boy's aunt, described Sean as a quiet boy who likes to write poetry and attend church.

The family believes Sean was attacked because Moore wanted his bike.

"I would like to know why a 27-year-old man would take a bike from a child and then set three dogs on him," Arnett asked.

But police said they ruled out robbery as a motive and believe the attack was random because the bike was found at the scene.

©2001 Associated Press

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