Residents of Southside subdivision are calling for county authorities to take action after a pitbull attacked a 66-year-old woman and bit off her middle finger at the knuckle.
The pitbull is one of many pitbulls owned by a nearby resident who refuses to keep the dogs confined to his property.
“I don’t know how I got my hand loose,” said bite victim Terry Carlson, who says the pitbull’s jaw was clamped on her finger for several minutes. “My husband was beating it with a cane trying to get it to let go. The next thing I remember, I was sitting at the kitchen table bleeding.”
Carlson said the attack happened inside her home on Wednesday, March 6. She said she was preparing to take her puppy for a morning walk when she saw the pitbull in her front yard. The pitbull spotted her puppy and charged inside her home to attack it, getting the puppy in its jaw. In trying successfully to save her puppy’s life, Carlson ended up sacrificing her finger.
“This has been an ongoing battle with those dogs for two years,” said Carlson. “We don’t know what else to do. We call Animal Control and they won’t call us back. There are pitbulls roaming our neighborhood and no one will do a thing about it. You shouldn’t be afraid to walk outside your door. There are kids in this neighborhood these dogs could kill.”
The dog is currently quarantined at Warren County Animal Control. A judge will decide if it can be returned to its owner.
Southside resident John Morgan agrees the pitbulls have been a continual problem. He too says he has tried to get something done, but to no avail.
“They are going to have to kill a kid before anyone does anything about them,” said Morgan. “They are very dangerous. Everybody in the neighborhood has complained about them, and I mean everybody. They are in my backyard all the time. I can’t let my grandkids go outside.”
Morgan works for McMinnville Police Department, but the case is outside his jurisdiction because he lives outside the city limits. Southside Drive is located off Viola Road.
“I’ve filed a report with the sheriff’s department and I’ve been down there to talk to the man myself,” said Morgan. “I finally understand how people feel when they say the authorities won’t do anything about their problem. Being an authority, I’ve always thought that wasn’t true, but now I see for myself what they’re talking about.”
Morgan says he thinks there are currently three to four pitbulls living at the home. He says the number has been as high as five.
“They have attacked both of my dogs and nearly killed them,” said Morgan. “Now we have to keep them in the house. I think everyone is waiting for me to go down there and kill the dogs, but I don’t want to kill another man’s dogs.”