3 people injured after Washington dog attack

Published 6:42 pm Thursday, September 15, 2016

Three people suffered severe wounds after a brutal dog attack on Tuesday.

The incident occurred on South Wedgewood Drive in Washington and began when UPS driver Ronald Robinson came to deliver a package at a home and was attacked by four dogs — a 1-year-old Labrador-boxer mix, a 1-year-old Staffordshire terrier mix, a 9-month-old German Shepherd mix and a 5-month-old potential pit bull mix.

“He was attacked, from what I can tell, about halfway through the yard while he was holding the packages in his arms,” Beaufort County Animal Control Director Billy Lassiter said. “The dogs attacked him, and according to eyewitness statements, he was screaming and trying to crawl back to his truck.”

Lassiter said two neighbors ran over to help, one of who pulled Robinson into the truck. The dogs pulled the other neighbor on the ground, however, and began attacking him before he was pulled onto the truck, as well.

“He was panicking. He really thought he was going to die,” Lassiter said of Robinson. “It’s pretty severe, the lacerations and the damage that they’ve (the dogs) done.”

Lassiter said animal control was the first agency to respond to the 911 call, closely followed by Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office and EMS personnel. Animal control used tranquilizer darts to sedate three of the four dogs.

The owner of the dogs was not home at the time of the attack. There is no word on whether he will face charges.

One neighbor and Robinson suffered severe lacerations on their bodies, while the second neighbor suffered facial injuries requiring plastic surgery.

The dogs are being held at the animal control facility and will be quarantined for 10 days to ensure there is no risk of rabies.

Lassiter said he doesn’t think there is a substantial risk of rabies, as two of the dogs were up to date on vaccinations and the other dogs’ vaccinations only expired two weeks ago.

The dogs will then undergo a trial of sorts, as a board will hear witness accounts and determine the next steps to take.

Of the four dogs, the German Shepherd mix appears to be the most mild mannered, and Lassiter said he believes the 5-month-old was just following the behavior of the older dogs. The most aggressive one is the Labrador-boxer mix, according to multiple sources at the shelter.

Lassiter said it is unusual to hear of attacks this severe, especially in a family-friendly neighborhood, but he is thankful it wasn’t worse.

“It’s still an ongoing process. We don’t have all of the information,” he said. “I just thank God.”