Wednesday, June 23, 2010
277. TWO DEAD AFTER UNION CITY DRAG RACE IN JUNE, 2001. 278. JUNE 19, 2001: RICHMOND BOY IN CRITICAL CONDITION AFTER DOG ATTACK
Published news story update by Lurene Helzer for Bay City News, June 21, 2001, “Two Dead after Union City Drag Race.”
This story stands out for me today because it reminds of routine suburban life in San Francisco’s East Bay. It’s not unusual to see young men competing with one another with their cars in the middle of the night, killing themselves and others in the process.
They often do this on main streets – Union City’s portion of Mission Boulevard in this case – and reach speeds of around 100 miles per hour.
Published news story by Lurene Helzer for Bay City News, June 19, 2001, “Richmond Boy in Critical Condition after Dog Attack.” (Photo of pit bull from Wikipedia, Creative Commons photo.)
The 11-year boy was out riding his bike in the high-violent crime city of Richmond when he was attacked by some number of pit bulls; possibly three, but at least one dog. People often say that pit bulls are friendly, but it’s hard for me to take this characterization seriously since I had to write several stories like this one as a reporter.
I could not help developing this feeling about the attack dogs because a follow-up brief I did a few weeks later [BCN5, July 6] reported that the boy remained in the hospital on a ventilator. The canines had ripped off the eleven-year old boy’s ears and inflicted dozens of puncture wounds to his upper body.
Today, in December of 2008, I wonder who paid the medical bills. Are owners of such dogs financially responsible? Original news brief follows:
Richmond Police spokesman Sgt. Enos Johnson said an 11-year-old boy who was riding his bicycle on the 300 block of Lucas Avenue early Monday evening was mauled by one or more pit bulls and is now in critical condition.
Johnson said two people are in custody, who may be owners of the dog or dogs involved. Only one dog is in custody so far, he said.
Police cannot yet confirm the number of dogs involved in the attack, but investigators have “reason to believe” another dog was involved, possibly three altogether, Johnson said.
The boy was riding his bike around 7:30 p.m. near Peres Elementary School, which is at 719 5th St. in Richmond near the site of the attack, he said.
Johnson said the unidentified boy is at Oakland’s Children’s Hospital in critical condition.
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