A Roseville couple viciously mauled Sunday by a pit bull owned by the woman's son were attacked by the same dog two weeks ago, police say.
The story was originally reported by the Detroit Free Press. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families.
The woman had been hospitalized in the earlier incident, while the man was treated for dog bites and released, Roseville Police Chief James Berlin said. He said the woman's son, who owns the dog, was issued two tickets at the time, but the dog continued to remain in the home.
Then on Sunday night, the dog again attacked the couple while the son was away, Berlin said, critically injuring both of them. The woman's condition was upgraded to serious condition Monday afternoon, but the man -- who police found unconscious inside the home with "horrific" wounds -- remained listed in critical condition, Berlin said.
Both are hospitalized with bites to their arms and faces. Berlin did not release the victims' names, but said they and the woman's son live together in the home.
No arrests or charges have been made in Sunday's mauling. The woman's 28-year-old son owns the 1-year-old male dog believed to have been involved in both attacks. The dog was euthanized Monday and sent to Lansing to be checked for rabies, Berlin said. He said the dog's owner signed off on the dog being euthanized.
Berlin said the son was cited in Roseville District Court for harboring a vicious animal and failure to license his dog, both misdemeanors, after the incident two weeks ago. The son didn't do anything or get rid of the dog, Berlin said, saying that the son wasn't home during either attack. He did not know how long the son had been living in the home.
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What To Do If A Dog Bites You in Michigan
If you or someone you care about was bitten or attacked by a dog in Michigan, you should take the following steps:
- Place a clean towel over the injury to stop any bleeding.
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- Apply a sterile bandage to the wound.
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- Notify Animal Control or the Police Department and file a written report
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MCL Section 287.351 is the Michigan law for dog bites and attacks.
(1) If a dog bites a person, without provocation while the person is on public property, or lawfully on private property, including the property of the owner of the dog, the owner of the dog shall be liable for any damages suffered by the person bitten, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner's knowledge of such viciousness.
(2) A person is lawfully on the private property of the owner of the dog within the meaning of this act if the person is on the owner's property in the performance of any duty imposed upon him or her by the laws of this state or by the laws or postal regulations of the United States, or if the person is on the owner's property as an invitee or licensee of the person lawfully in possession of the property unless said person has gained lawful entry upon the premises for the purpose of an unlawful or criminal act.
In addition to the dog bite statute, Michigan also has common laws that are used for victims to make claims for injuries caused in an attack. Under Michigan’s common law, the dog attack victim only has to prove that the owner of the dog knew (or should have known) that the dog had vicious propensities. A dog owner is also liable if the dog was not on a leash at the time of the attack if the attack occurred on public property, like a park, public street, or neighboring property.
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