9-year-old girl attacked by pit bulls


SEATTLE - A nine-year-old girl has been treated at Harborview Medical Center after she was attacked by pit bulls at a friend’s house in South Seattle Friday night.

 Daniella Valdez’s family said she and her eight-year-old sister were invited to play at a friend’s house, in the 2000 block of 23rd Avenue South.

 Valdez’s younger sister, Anna, said their friend’s mom told them to play in the front yard, where pit bulls were unchained.

 “And then they got Daniella, because she was running. They pulled her side to side. They were biting her really bad,” Anna Valdez said.

 Daniella Valdez now has scars and stitches on her face, back, neck and arm.

 The owner, who did not want to speak on camera Friday night, told a KIRO 7 crew the girls had entered the fenced area of the front yard and that his dogs had rushed through the screen door.

 He said he pulled the dogs off the girl.

 “The owner kept apologizing and kept saying I'm sorry, I'm sorry. And he had this big cut on his leg,” said Denise Canebett, the victim’s older sister.

 Valdez’s family now wants the dogs’ owners to be held accountable.

 Officers on the scene told KIRO 7 Friday night that because the incident happened on private property, there would likely not be a criminal case.

 But Saturday, a Seattle police spokesperson said there is still an open investigation, and that a final decision on what happens to the dogs will be in the hands of animal control.

 An animal control manager said they cannot share details of this particular open investigation. However, anytime an animal causes a flesh wound on a person, animal control officers have to check the animal’s vaccination records and go through a required quarantine procedure.

 Yazmin Valdez, the victim’s aunt, said she wants to see the dogs put to sleep.

 “Once it happens once, it's going to keep happening until they actually do something to stop them,” she said.

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