911 call from dog attack that killed toddler

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by Jaime Cerreta

Bio | Email | Follow: @CerretaNews

azfamily.com

Posted on September 23, 2013 at 6:15 PM

Updated Tuesday, Oct 1 at 9:37 AM

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GILBERT -- We have new information about Sunday's dog attack in Gilbert that left a 2-year-old boy dead and put his baby sitter in the hospital.

"Right now, we're just looking at it as a tragic, terrible accident," said Sgt. Jesse Sanger of the Gilbert Police Department.

On Monday, we saw pictures of the dogs involved in the attack. The two male and two female pit bulls are now in the custody of Maricopa County Animal Control.

The dogs weigh 60 to 75 pounds each, and are between a year and a half and 6 years old.

"They're pit bull mixes," said Melissa Gable of Maricopa County Animal Control. "They're big, strong dogs. That's what pit bulls are."

Gilbert police said the baby sitter was watching five kids at her house near Val Vista Drive and Germann Road when her dogs attacked the child. The sitter tried to save the boy, but ended up badly hurt herself. The other children in the home were not injured.

3TV has learned the baby sitter was in surgery Monday. Gilbert police tell us they have not yet talked to the parents or the baby sitter. No charges are pending at this time, but that could change as police investigate. 

The dogs will remain in quarantine for 10 days.

“Unfortunately, you tend to hear about them when they bite because they are so strong and do a lot of damage. They've got those strong jaws. They're muscular dogs,” Gable said. “We don’t want to put animals out in the community if it’s going to be dangerous."

Gilbert police have released the 911 call. You can hear the baby sitter frantically ask for an ambulance. She told the operator that the little boy was turning blue. She also said she had locked herself in the bedroom while the dogs were loose in the house. Police arrived at the house in four minutes.

The little boy was rushed to Mercy Gilbert Medical Center but he was pronounced dead when he arrived at the hospital. The 28-year-old baby sitter suffered multiple bites to her hands, legs and arms.

The ASPCA says between 2005 and 2012, pit bulls killed 151 Americans. And one-third of dog bites happen to a victim who is temporarily living with or visiting the dog's owner.

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