DELAWARE TWP. – 7-year-old Frankie Hall was seriously injured by a dog on 4 July when he was at his neighbors home playing and watching fireworks.
According to the neighbors, they take extreme care to secure their red-nosed pit bull Diesel when visitors came over and that they have never had any serious incidents with the dog. Township Police Sgt. Elliot Gray said that they always kept the dog separated from company.
An investigation was carried out by township officers to determine what happened. Gray told that Frankie had been to the residence several times and the dog was always secured.
Although no one actually witnessed the attack, Frankie told the police that he was outside playing and watching the fireworks go off, when Diesel got loose from inside the garage. The dog then “charged at him and tried to bite his neck, but missed and latched on to his face,” said Frankie.
Grownups rushed over immediately and got the dog off Frankie. Gray noted that the homeowner put the dog down.
Frankie had to undergo reconstructive surgery for the injuries he sustained in the attack. A team at Morristown Trauma Center operated on him for five hours. He came home after the surgery to recuperate but he will need more surgery in the future. A family friend set up a Go Fund Me page named “Frankie’s medical fund” to get contributions to help with Frankie’s ongoing medical expenses.
A full investigation was carried out by township police which was reviewed by the county Prosecutor’s Office. No criminal charges are pending from those offices, “outside of having an unlicensed dog.”
Frank Crisologo, who is the prosecutor’s detective, said “it was deemed not to be criminal in nature.”
Sgt. Phil Amato with the agency is investigating the whole incident. However, he could not be reached for comment. The New Jersey SPCA’s Humane Police are also investigating the incident, from the bite to the dog being put down.