Attack revives issue of ban on pit bulls
BY JASON KUIPER AND MAGGIE O'BRIEN
WORLD-HERALD STAFF WRITERS
After a pit bull mix bit four people Wednesday, a neighbor wishes the city would ban the dogs.
Gary Thompson said he knew something bad would happen because of the dog, Duke.
Thompson said he believes a ban would cut down on incidents like the one Wednesday, when two toddlers and their mothers were attacked.
Several cities and towns in the area have done just that, the largest being Council Bluffs, where the number of bites has dropped since pit bulls were banned there three years ago. As of Wednesday night, there had been no reported attacks there this year.
Nebraska Humane Society officials have said a ban in a city the size of Omaha would not work for a number of reasons, including the difficulty of determining what a pit bull is.
Several breeds are considered pit bulls.
Officials also have said that people who raise pit bulls and use them for illegal purposes would simply switch to a different breed or that unsavory owners of those dogs would keep them and not get licenses.
Officials have said that instead of a ban on a single type of dog, Omaha has strong dangerous-dog and menacing-behavior laws.
City officials have said a ban of the breed has never been seriously considered.
Each year, 800,000 Americans seek medical attention for dog bites, half of them children. Of those injured, 386,000 require emergency treatment and about a dozen die.
Almost two-thirds of injuries among children ages 4 years and younger are to the head or neck areas.
Wednesday's attack appears to be the worst in Omaha since 2001, when a toddler's genitals were torn off by a pit bull as the child slept.
• Contact the writer: 444-1279, jason.kuiper@...
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Police: Pit Bull Attacks 4 People; Child Critically Injured
POSTED: 4:29 pm CDT June 25, 2008
UPDATED: 9:50 pm CDT June 25, 2008
OMAHA, Neb. -- An Omaha toddler underwent surgery Wednesday night to reattach her scalp after a pit bull attacked her and three other people.
Police identified the most seriously injured as 15-month-old Charlotte Blevins.
Police said two mothers were pulling two children in a wagon when the dog came out of its collar and attacked. Ray said the dog pulled Blevins from the wagon by the scalp.
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Bless the Bullys