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Pit bull kills Yorkshire terrier, injures man

A pit bull killed a woman's Yorkshire terrier Saturday afternoon and injured a man at Okeeheelee Park in Palm Beach C...

Posted: Jan 30, 2018 12:46 AM
Updated: Jan 30, 2018 12:46 AM

A pit bull killed a woman's Yorkshire terrier Saturday afternoon and injured a man at Okeeheelee Park in Palm Beach County.

The attack occurred at Pooch Pines Dog Park inside Okeeheelee Park just before 4 p.m.

An incident report said the Palm Beach County Sheriff Office contacted animal care and control about a gray pit bull attacking and killing a small dog.

When ACC arrived, a PBSO deputy was standing with the pit bull, tethered temporarily to a tree.

Although the dog was very aggressive, the ACC worker was able to use a catch pole to load the dog into his vehicle.

A witness who was hurt, Vincent Johnson, told the animal care and control worker that he saw a woman, identified as Jennifer Levy, walking her dogs near the dog park area.

As her dog was relieving itself, Johnson said he spotted the pit bull running loose and attacking Levy's Yorkshire terrier.

Johnson said he tried to grab the pit bull and punched it so it would let go of the little dog, but he was unsuccessful.

Johnson said the person who brought the pit bull to the park, identified as Fernando Matta Gonzalez, lost control of the dog and it attacked the Yorkie.

Johnson said his bite injury occurred when he was trying to get control of the dog and stop the attack.

A report said Johnson's suffered a puncture wound with a slight skin tear the size of the tip of a pencil eraser.

Levy said she was leaving the Pooch Pines Dog Park and had just exited the gated area with her two dogs at the time of the attack.

She said her 8-year-old Yorkshire Terrier named Jill had stopped by a grassy area near a sidewalk and began to defecate.

Levy said she saw the pit bull as her dog finished relieving itself and began walking off. That's when the pit bull suddenly ran to them and grabbed her dog.

She said the pit bull continuously bit and shook her dog like a rag doll, not letting go. Levy said she was in shock and the owner of the dog did nothing but standby.

Animal care and control later spoke to Gonzalez about the attack.

Gonzalez said he did not own the pit bull but found it Saturday at the Pooch Pines Dog Park at Okeeheelee Park. Gonzalez said he left the park with the dog to take it to Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League.

Gonzalez said when he took it to the Peggy Adams, he was told that the dog had to be up to date with vaccinations, so he returned to the dog park. However, Peggy Adams was later contacted and said they had no record of Gonzalez visiting their facility on Saturday.

Once Gonzalez arrived back at Okeeheelee Park, he said the pit bull became excited when he saw the Yorkshire terrier and it broke free.

Since Gonzalez was in care of the pit bull at the time of this attack, ACC cited him for:

Failure to properly confine dog

Failure to vaccinate dog against rabies

Failure to comply with county tag requirements

Failure to comply with county sterilization program

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