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Dog attack at bus stop

Published: Sat, September 12, 2009 @ 12:00 a.m.

Pit bull bites boy, 10; Police capture suspect



YOUNGSTOWN — An elementary-school student is recovering from wounds he received during a pit bull attack at a bus stop on the city’s South Side.

Toris Gonner, 10, of South Heights Avenue was rushed to the hospital just after 8:30 a.m. with a dog bite to his lower leg. The boy’s grandfather, Ronell Waller, said the injuries are not life threatening.

Waller is still surprised that the attack took place at a busy intersection where kids catch the bus at various times in the morning each weekday.

“We have never had these problems before. These kids catch the bus here every morning,” he said.

Police took Dustin Anglin, 22, also of South Heights Avenue, into custody several hours after Gonner had been attacked because Anglin is believed to be the owner of the dog.

Mahoning County Dog Warden Nelson said Anglin could face a list of charges including charges related to saying he did not own the dog. He said officials will collaborate and check the boy’s condition to see what charges will be filed.

Gonner’s Friday morning began like it does for many 10-year-old students in the area — a walk to the bus stop with his younger sister 9-year-old Vinnasia McGary. The day took a turn just as the two children reached the bus stop at the corner of South Heights Avenue and Sheridan Road.

Mary Campbell, a South Heights Avenue neighbor of the children, was sitting in her car near the bus stop waiting to put her children on the school bus just as Toris and Vinnasia approached the stop.

“This corner is where all the kids in the neighborhood get the bus,” said Campbell. “Today was just different because their grandmother or mom usually bring them down for the bus but today they didn’t.”

Campbell said a large brown and white pit bull dog and a smaller dog ran out as the two kids approached the corner. The large dog immediately went after Gonner, she said, biting him on the leg and then running to Anglin’s small house nearest to the corner.

Vinnasia said she remembers the dog coming out and biting her brother. She said she was able to run and jump in Campbell’s car when the dog came out.

Firefighters Chris Brown and Bill Palma, at a nearby fire station on Midlothian Boulevard, noticed the commotion and ran over to offer treatment to the bleeding boy.

“If it wasn’t for them, this little boy could have bled to death,” said Campbell.

Campbell said she exchanged words with Anglin after the attack, asking if the dog belonged to him, but he denied owning a pit bull. She said Anglin told her his dog had been stolen several months ago, then left his residence.

Youngstown police officers arrived at the home minutes after the attack and could hear a large dog barking inside the home.

Nelson also arrived at the home minutes after the attack and asked for a search warrant to search the house for the dog.

He said Anglin had also told him that he does not own a pit bull.

Before officers and animal control could enter the home by force, Anglin returned to the residence. About 15 minutes later he emerged from the house with a large brown and white pit bull.

Campbell, standing with a very reluctant and seemingly afraid Vinnasia, identified the dog along with the child before the animal was placed in the county dog warden van.

Police searched the home and took Anglin into custody.

“This is just crazy that these kids can’t wait on the bus to get an education because of these pit bulls and people ... who own them,” said Nelson. “We are going to protect these kids.”

Nelson said owners of pit bulls are required to carry $100,000 insurance on the animal and keep it confined in a 6-by-6-foot pen. There was no visible enclosed fence on the Anglin property.



1ts1227(137 comments)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

The sad thing is people will freak that it is a pit bull, the problem is an idiot that owns a dog, doesn't take care of it, and doesn't tie it up. The problem is not a stupid god, it's a stupid person that happens to take care of and own a dog.

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2ts1227(137 comments)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

dog, not god* oops.

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3ytownsteelman(680 comments)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

Until the day comes when you can put down negligent pet owners, the only option is to put down the dog.

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4DonHarshbarger(22 comments)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

Good one, ytownsteelman. Maybe our lawmakers should do that. It would keep the jail population down. lol

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5ismileuponyou(5 comments)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

Pit Bulls are not on the Bully Breed List for nothing. They have an aggressive streak in them that must be bred out, which will take many many years to do. Until then, we have the Michael Vick wanna be's of Youngstown to thank for such attacks.

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6Celeste(16 comments)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

Unfortunately, this breed is genetically defective with no recall and a jaw that locks beyond the animals control. It is too bad many of the owners are genetically defective, also!

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7Ytownboy(142 comments)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

Ditto with all of you folks. These people have no respect for life of any kind.

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8DoctorGonzo(728 comments)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

I cannot believe this seemingly upstanding pet owner did not carry the the requisite 100k insurance or keep the dog in a 6x6 pen.
He must have had a lot on his plate at the office and it was placed on the back burner.

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9redfox293(1 comment)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

First of all, the person who said that Pit Bulls have an aggressive streak in them, needs to elaborate a little further. By nature, American Pit Bull Terriers and Amstaffs DO have an aggressive nature...toward other DOGS, NOT people. Secondly, do some research, and you'll discover that Pit Bulls and Amstaffs were NEVER bred to be aggressive toward humans, even during the days when dog-fighting was legal. In those days, if a Pit Bull was aggressive toward a human, it was shot. Period. Human aggression is not, and has never been, a normal character trait in Pit Bulls. If anything, Pit Bulls would have to have aggression toward people bred INTO them, not out of them. Furthermore, this idea that Pit Bulls have locking jaws, is nothing more than media hype, and a lie. Pit Bulls, originally, were bred to grab, hold, and not let go; however, there is no mechanism on a Pit Bull suggesting that they have locking jaws. Get your facts straight before making comments about Pit Bulls that have no evidence to back them up. Do your own research, instead of blindly believing other people and the media. In fact, don't even take my word for it; go find out for yourselves what Pit Bulls and Amstaffs are really like. Spend time with a purebred, well-bred, properly-trained, properly-socialized American Pit Bull Terrier or Amstaff, then come back and tell me they are naturally aggressive toward humans.

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10Celeste(16 comments)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

Like we all said, redfox, you get your facts straight and
follow me to cemeteries and I can show you what these defective beasts have done. End of story, talk to some victims!!

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11Pierside12(9 comments)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

I thought that the dog warden was going house to house this year to make sure that all dogs were licensed (article in the Vindicator during May/June time frame). Why wasn't this covered in the article?
I can't get over that there are more dogs listed for sale in the classified ads of the Vindicator that there are jobs! Usually reputable breeders don't advertise in the newspaper.
The people in this neighborhood should demand (via their city councilman or the county commissioners) that the dog warden does a canvas of their area!

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12Ohiomom(1 comment)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

I just wanted to say that I personally know this dog. He was not raised to fight, I was always under the impression that if a dog attacked that they were probably raised to fight or raised mean, until now. I too figured it was ignorance and the owner, it made me so angry. I can tell you that this dog was raised like a baby. He has been around kids, including my kids, with no problems. He has been brought out to our property where there are other family dogs. They have treated him like a child, playful and good natured. I can't explain what happened here, however, I do know he definitely was not raised to be aggressive or to fight, I am 100% sure of that.

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13BusDriver(46 comments)posted 6 years, 8 months ago

Feel sorry for the child and hope everything is O.K. and just like there is no pen there probably wont be the insurance, there has to be better ways to enforce these laws to protect people and these animals.

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