Saturday, June 18, 2011

SD woman, 75, mauled by neighbor's pit bulls

From The Sacramento Bee

Authorities say a pair of pit bulls mauled a 75-year-old woman inside her fenced yard as she went out for her morning newspaper in San Diego.
Police Officer Frank Cali says the woman is hospitalized in serious condition following the attack Saturday in the Paradise Hills neighborhood.
She suffered several lacerations to her body and injuries to her arms and legs.
Cali tells City News Service the dogs, which belonged to a neighbor, entered the woman's yard through a hole in a fence.
Animal control officers took possession of the animals, but Cali did not know if charges have been filed against the dogs' owner.

Update June 18, 2011 - The following article is by Joseph M.D. Young, NBC San Diego:

75-Year-Old Woman Mauled by 2 Pit Bulls

Victim will lose a leg, possibly arm: husband

A 75-year-old woman was mauled by two pit bulls as she went out to get a newspaper Saturday morning in a Paradise Hills neighborhood, according to San Diego police.
The victim, Emako Mendoza, sustained several lacerations to her body and injuries to her arms and legs in the attack which happened in the 5800 block of Alleghany around 6:30 a.m, said San Diego Police Officer Frank Cali.
Mendoza’s husband James told NBCSanDiego that his wife also suffered a heart attack and other bites on her body as a result of the dog attack.
Mendoza was taken to Scripps Mercy Hospital, according to officials with the San Diego Fire Department.
The victim’s home shares a side fence with the home where the pit bulls were kept.
The dogs, which belonged to the victim's neighbor, entered the yard through a hole in the fence, Cali said.
A woman at the scene, who identified herself as the dogs' owner to NBCSanDiego, said the dogs were 7 year-old "Reynolds" pit bulls.
Mendoza’s husband said he knew the dogs were dangerous and had been told by the neighbors that they had gotten rid of the dogs three weeks ago.
San Diego Animal control officers took possession of the dogs, but Cali did not know if charges had been filed against the dogs' owner.
SDAC told NBCSanDiego that the two pit bulls involved in the attack were euthanized at the shelter sometime Saturday morning.
The victim's husband told NBCSanDiego that his wife will lose a leg and possibly an arm due to the attack and that he planned on filing a lawsuit against the dog owners.
County Animal Control is investigating the attack and says the dog owners could face felony charges.

Update June 19, 2011 - The following article is from Southwest Riverside News Network:

Woman attacked by pit bulls in critical condition, dogs euthanized

A 75-year-old woman attacked by two pit bulls in her San Diego-area back yard lost a leg and could lose an arm.
Emako Mendoza was attacked in her yard on Alleghany Street near Potomac Street about 6:30 a.m. Saturday and remained hospitalized today, authorities said. The dogs, which belong to a neighbor, apparently got in through a hole in a fence.
“She’s not doing too good,” her husband, Frank Mendoza, 78, it was reported in the San Diego Union-Tribune. He said she was in critical condition.
Neighbor Alba Cornelio surrendered the dogs to the county Animal Control officers, and they were euthanized, police said.
Doctors at Scripps Mercy Hospital amputated one of the woman’s legs and may amputate her left arm, which was damaged from her hand to her elbow, it was reported.
The couple have lived in the home for 42 years, and their neighbor had been raising pit bulls for about 10 years, Mendoza said. He said the dogs made a racket had not caused problems until now.

Update June 19, 2011 - The following article is from UPI:

San Diego woman mauled in pit bull attack

An elderly San Diego woman faced the possible amputation of a second limb Sunday after she was attacked by a pair of pit bulls, police said.
Emako Mendoza, 75, was jumped by the two dogs in the backyard of her home around dawn Saturday when she was picking up her morning newspaper.
Mendoza was rushed to Scripps Mercy Hospital where surgeons had to remove her badly mauled leg and tried to save her equally mangled arm. The San Diego Union-Tribune said the injuries to Mendoza's arm were so serious that it might have to be amputated as well.
"She's not doing too good," Mendoza's husband, Frank, 78, said Saturday night. "She is in very critical condition."
Police said the dogs, which belonged to a neighbor, were turned over to animal control officers for euthanasia. The neighbors have been breeding pit bulls for the past 10 years, The Union-Tribune said.

Update June 20, 2011 - The following article is from Mercury News:

San Diego woman may lose more limbs to dog attack

Relatives say a 75-year-old woman attacked by a pair of pit bulls in her San Diego backyard had one leg amputated and could lose her other leg and an arm. Emako Mendoza was attacked Saturday when she went to get a newspaper. Officials at Scripps Mercy Hospital say she is in critical condition Monday.
James Mendoza told the San Diego Union-Tribune his wife is covered in bite wounds on her arms, back, buttocks and right leg. Her left leg was amputated at the knee on Saturday.
Mendoza says she is in terrible pain.
The pit bulls belonged to the couple's neighbor and were euthanized after the attack. Animal control officials also confiscated 11 puppies born to one of the dogs.
No one knows how the dogs got into the fenced yard.

Update June 30, 2011 - The following article is from Daily Journal:
2 arrested for pit bull attack that cost 75-year-old San Diego woman a leg

Authorities have arrested the owners of two pit bulls that mauled a 75-year-old woman in a San Diego backyard, forcing the amputation of her leg below the knee.
Thirty-nine-year-old Alba Cornelio and 19-year-old Carla Cornelio were arrested Wednesday by county animal control officers. They remained jailed Thursday and could face felony charges of owning dogs that caused serious bodily injury.
Authorities say the dogs came through a hole in a fence and attacked Emako Mendoza on June 18 in the Paradise Hills area. An investigation showed that the dogs attacked another neighbor on Christmas.
The dogs have been euthanized.

Update July 1, 2011 - The following article is from San Jose Mercury News:

2 plead not guilty in dog attack on older SD woman

The owners of two pit bulls that mauled a 75-year-old San Diego woman and forced the partial amputation of her leg pleaded not guilty Thursday. Alba Cornelio, 39, and her daughter Carla Cornelio, 19, face two felony counts of having a mischievous animal that causes serious bodily injury and six misdemeanor code violations, said Tanya Sierra, a spokeswoman for the county district attorney's office.
Both were arrested Wednesday by officers with the San Diego County Department of Animal Services. They remained jailed Thursday, and a call to their home seeking comment was not returned.
The Cornelios bred and sold pit bull puppies, animal control Lt. Dan DeSousa said.
Two of their dogs mauled Emako Mendoza of the Paradise Hills neighborhood on June 18 as she was bringing a newspaper to place on a backyard table for her husband to read, DeSousa said.
The dogs lived next door and got into the yard through a gap in the fence, he said.
Mendoza was severely bitten, and her mangled left leg was amputated below the knee. She remained hospitalized Thursday, DeSousa said, but he did not know her condition.
The 6-year-old female dogs, Estrella and Paloma, were turned over to animal control officers and euthanized at the owners' request. Eleven puppies born to one of the dogs also were killed at the owners' request, DeSousa said.
One of the pit bulls involved in the attack had bitten a poodle and the poodle's owner Dec. 25, but the bites were minor and the poodle's owner declined to press charges, DeSousa said. It was unclear why the dogs attacked Mendoza but they were kept outside and may have lacked the social skills that indoor dogs often develop, DeSousa said.
"Responsible owners would have their dogs well-socialized with other dogs and people," DeSousa said. "Mrs. Mendoza paid a horrific price for the owners' irresponsibility."

Update July 6, 2011 - The following article is from KGTV:

No Contact Ordered For Women Accused In Pit Bull Attack

Alba, Carla Cornelio Facing Charges Connected To Pit Bull Attack On Emako Mendoza

A mother and daughter whose two female pit bulls allegedly attacked their 75-year-old next-door neighbor in her backyard – causing part of a leg and an arm to be amputated – were ordered to have no contact with the victim or her husband, a judge ruled on Wednesday.
Judge David Szumowski granted the "no contact" request by prosecutors against Alba Medina Cornelio, 39, and her 19-year-old daughter, Carla Ramirez Cornelio.Alba Cornelio remains held on $350,000 bail. Defense attorney Donovan Dunnion said the mother has an immigration "hold" but has been living in the United States for 19 years.
Carla Cornelio has bailed out of custody.
Each defendant is charged with two felony counts of having a mischievous animal that causes serious bodily injury and six misdemeanor code violations, including failing to protect the public from a dog and owning a dangerous dog.
They each face more than three years in prison if convicted.
Deputy District Attorney Makenzie Harvey told the judge last week that Emako Mendoza was attacked in her fenced-in yard right after she went outside to get the morning paper on June 18.
The victim had her left arm amputated below the elbow and her left leg amputated below the knee, Harvey said.
"The dogs, we believe, got through a gap that's in the defendants' fence, and then pushed through some barbed wire that the victim had in place to sort of cover the gap on their portion of the yard," the prosecutor said.
Harvey alleged the defendants knew they had dangerous dogs because the same two pit bulls escaped from their yard last Christmas Day and attacked a man who was walking his puppy.
The puppy was badly injured and the man was bitten, Harvey said.
She said the pit bull was difficult to treat while quarantined because of its aggressive nature.
After the latest attack, Alba Cornelio allowed animal service officers to euthanize her two 6-year-old pit bulls and their 3-week-old puppies.
A readiness conference is set for July 13 and a preliminary hearing for July 15.

Related articles:

  • Pit bulls attack elderly woman in San Diego, injuries 'life-threatening' - Los Angeles Times
  • SD woman, 75, mauled by neighbor pit bulls - KABC
  • Woman, 75, loses leg and has heart attack after she's mauled by neighbour's dogs - and she may lose other leg and an arm - The Daily Mail

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