Man Charged Over Dog Attack Which Seriously Injured Two-Year-Old Girl

Man Charged Over Dog Attack Which Seriously Injured Two-Year-Old Girl

A man has been charged over a dog attack which left a two-year-old girl with serious injuries to her head and body.

The youngster was playing in the garden of the house in Cockburn Street, Toxteth, Liverpool, when she suffered a "savage" attack on Sunday afternoon.

A spokesman for Merseyside Police said: "Andrew McGowan, 35, of Cockburn Street, Toxteth, has been charged with being in charge of four dogs which were dangerously out of control at the rear of a property on Cockburn Street, which whilst out of control injured a two-year-old girl and 57-year-old woman."

McGowan has been remanded in custody to appear at Liverpool and Knowsley Magistrates' Court on Tuesday.

Emergency services were first called to the house at about 3.40pm after reports a child had been bitten by a dog and a woman had also been injured.

One neighbour described hearing the girl scream as the dog attacked her.

Another said she saw the aunt dash from the house carrying the girl, called Ella, screaming: "The dog's got the baby! The dog's got the baby!"

The girl was treated at the scene by paramedics before being taken by air ambulance to Alder Hey Children's Hospital.

Her condition is described as serious, but not life-threatening.

The aunt was taken to the Royal Liverpool University Hospital where she received treatment for minor injuries.

She was later released from hospital.

Police later seized five dogs and six puppies from a neighbouring property and confirmed the breed was an American Bully Dog - which is not banned under the Dangerous Dogs Act.

Two of the five adult dogs were humanely destroyed.

Speaking earlier on Monday, Supt Mark Wiggins said: "There were three young children playing in that garden at the time, aged two, four and six and that the 57-year-old auntie who was in that property, was in the garden at the same time.

"Now she's managed to get the two older children back into the property unharmed, but unfortunately she's been hurt herself with minor injuries while she's been trying to protect the two-year-old.

"She (the girl) has got extensive injuries to her face, to her neck and to her body, and only time will tell if she fully recovers from that attack.

"We know one, if not more, of these dogs was involved in the attack, but we need to establish what went on.

"If the aunt of that two-year-old child hadn't intervened we could have been looking at a much more serious situation in this case."

He described the victim's family as traumatised and appealed to the public to report any worries about dangerous dogs or irresponsible owners to police.

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