UPDATE: Toddler returns home after surviving pit bull attack
Jamari is back home Thurs. night after being attacked by two pit bulls Tues. afternoon. (Pictured with his aunt and first cousin) (Source: Pigford Family)
Family members said they heard cries and looked over to see the dog attacking Jamari. (Source: family of child)
The dogs' owner, Wesley Lewis, was served several civil citations. (Source: Family of child)
Jamari after his reconstructive surgery. (Source: Family of child)
BURGAW, NC (WECT) – A toddler returned home Thursday night after he was attacked by two pit bulls Tuesday afternoon.
Family members said they heard 2-year-old Jamari Pigford crying and looked over to see the dogs attacking him.
Reports obtained from Animal Control show the toddler was playing in his own yard at the time of the attack.
The report shows that an adult, identified as Mr. Spencer, was working outside on a car while Jamari was playing. Spencer reported he then heard the child crying and looked over to see the dog "slinging him around."
According to the dogs' owner, Wesley Lewis, the two pit bulls escaped from a pin and dug under two separate fences, including one that was electrified. Only one of the two dogs attacked Jamari, but because both were on the loose, they were both quarantined and later put down.
Pender County Sheriff's Office Animal Control Supervisor Lt. Keith Ramsey said the N.C. State Veterinary Office ordered the two dogs be euthanized, and that their remains be sent to state laboratories for rabies testing.
According to the Pender County Animal Shelter, neither of the dogs had rabies.
Tiffany Swinson, the boy's aunt, said Jamari sustained injuries to his face, and needed reconstructive surgery to fix his wounds. Jamari's family released a brief statement Thursday saying they would like to thank everyone that prayed for Jamari while in the hospital.
Jamari's uncle, Terrell, described the incident with terrifying details, "I heard screams," the uncle said. "I stepped out of the garage to find a dog that had Jamari by the face and was whipping him around," Terrell said. Terrell told us he is still in disbelief and scared after what he saw.
The dogs' owner was served several civil citations for animals at large, no identification displayed, no rabies shots, and no rabies tags displayed
Lewis said Wednesday he wants the family to know that his "deepest thoughts and prayers are with the family" and that he is very sorry for what happened.
"I'm not defending the dogs, the dogs did wrong" Lewis said, "but I've never had an issue of the dogs hurting people."