Woman questions why dogs weren't removed from Lauderhill home before Saturday attack

Tony Elliot, 55, undergoes surgery after being attacked by 3 pit bulls

LAUDERHILL, Fla. – A woman whose son was attacked by a pack of pit bulls over the weekend is questioning why the three dogs weren't removed from a Lauderhill home months ago after they allegedly attacked three other people.

Shirley Ace told Local 10 News Monday that her son, Tony Elliot, 55, is badly injured and his recovery will take many months.

"To get that way from a dog, I don't know how to feel. I really don't," she said.  

Ace said her son was visiting his brother and some friends along Northwest 4th Court in Lauderhill when he was attacked by three pit bulls Saturday night. 

Police said the dogs' owners were cleaning out their crates and left them loose inside the yard.

When Elliot walked by, somehow they managed to escape from the fenced-in yard and pounced on Elliot. 

Police said the dog owners and neighbors tried to help, but Elliot was badly injured and was taken to the hospital. 

Ace said her son sustained puncture wounds to his face and legs. He already had one surgery over the weekend.

"His legs are all bit up -- wrapped from the toe all the way to the knee. The dog almost took off his nose," Ace said.

Elliot was taken out of the intensive care unit at Broward Health Medical Center Monday and his condition has been upgraded to fair. He is expected to remain hospitalized for a few more days. 

Ace said she is stunned that Elliot was attacked by the dogs since he would visit the home often.

She said the dogs should have been removed from the owners after they previously attacked three people back in October. 

"I know these people that the dog belongs to. I don't want to say anything to hurt them, but the dogs should have been gone a long time (ago)," Ace said.  

Broward Animal Care and Adoption Division officials said the owners were cited in that case for the bites, having no rabies vaccination and license for their dogs and they also received muzzle orders for all three dogs. 

Officials said someone was also bitten by two of the dogs, Tiny and Chino, in November. The owners received the same citations, plus a violation of the muzzle order and manner of keeping two dogs in a crate. 

Hearings have been scheduled for those two cases in February and March. 

"We attempted to also set a hearing to cite the dogs as dangerous, however, to date, no statements were ever received from the three victims in the first attack, which is required by ordinance to move forward with a dangerous dog hearing," program coordinator Lisa Mendhein said.

The owners have once again been cited by animal control, and authorities said they voluntarily gave up the dogs after the attack. 

Mendhein said the dogs will be euthanized once the 10-day quarantine period is over. 

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