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from The Boston Globe

    Uxbridge selectmen order dogs that attacked toddler destroyed

By Associated Press, 11/27/2001 10:16

UXBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) The town Board of Selectmen has ordered the destruction of two Rottweilers that attacked a 3-year-old boy.

The selectmen voted 5-0 on Monday night to have the dogs destroyed after hearing from the boy's mother and from three men who came to her son's rescue.

''I think we have to destroy the dogs,'' Selectman Robert Finnegan said. ''I couldn't look the parents in the eye.''

The dogs, Kodiak, a 105-pound male, and Madison, a 95-pound female, are owned by Jason J. Schiller, 29. His lawyer, Debra J. Slater-Wise, said the order would be appealed to Uxbridge District Court.

The boy's mother, Carrie M. Sherlock, said she was lifting her son Matthew the afternoon of Nov. 6 when ''the dogs literally took my son out of my hands.''

She said the two dogs came up from behind her and her son, grabbed him and dragged him about 40 feet while biting him.

Sherlock said tried to get the dogs to release Matthew, and at one point she was on the ground, pulling at the dogs.

''I started screaming,'' she said. ''My baby, my baby, they've got my baby. Please help me.''

Three men in the neighborhood, Ralph True, Jim Stevens and Darin Conley, told selectmen they heard the screams and came to the boy's aid.

''All the time I didn't know if the dog was going to attack me,'' said True, who fended the dogs off with a hammer. ''Five minutes and that kid wouldn't have been here.''

Matthew was treated for head, neck, back puncture wounds and lacerations in the emergency room at Milford-Whitinsville Regional Hospital.

Schiller described both dogs as loving and never aggressive.

''They may be timid, a dog's fear,'' he said. ''But they never bit anyone.''

Schiller and his girlfriend, Shawna Masterson, defended the animals, and offered photos and videotape made last weekend of the dogs playing with Masterson's two young children. He also said he has had a fence installed and taken other precautions since the attacks.

''I feel horrible,'' Schiller said. ''I don't think there are any words I can give to the Sherlocks to make it better.''

© Copyright 2001 Boston Globe Electronic Publishing Inc.

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