Pit bull mauls 9-year-old in Kannapolis

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 1, 2009

By Jessie Burchette
KANNAPOLIS ó A 6-year-old boy used a mop to beat a pit bull off his mother and may have saved the life of his badly mauled brother.
Kevin Bravo, 9, was taken to a hospital to undergo surgery to repair the wounds to the right side of his face and neck after what Kannapolis Police Chief Woody Chavis called a horrible attack.
Kevin and his younger brother, Jamie, both students at Fred L. Wilson Elementary School, got off the bus at their 1303 Rena St. home around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday. Rena Street is off West C Street, just inside the Rowan County line.
According to police, the children saw a dog in the backyard. They went in the house briefly, then came out to play with the dog.
But the large pit bull chased the brothers, who tried to run away.
Chavis said the dog grabbed Kevin and knocked him down in a ditch. The dog began chewing the right side of the child’s neck and face.
Jamie ran into the house to get his mother, Marcela, who ran out and attempted to pull the dog off her son.
Chavis said the dog turned on the woman and started biting her on the arms and hands.
While the dog attacked the mother, the mauled son was able to get up and run to the house.
Jamie got a mop and began beating the dog on the back, trying to get it off his mother.
The dog stopped the attack about the time the mop handle broke.
Both the mother and son were able to run to the house and call for help.
The dog remained in the area while police and emergency personnel responded.
Police followed the dog to its home at 111 Akron Ave.
Chavis said the dog’s owner, Nina Barkley, told officers she’d had the dog for about three months. The dog had been chained in the backyard but slipped out of its collar.
Police charged Barkley with having a dangerous dog, which attacked unprovoked and caused serious injury.
She is scheduled to appear in Rowan County District Court on April 8.
Rowan Animal Control Officer Tommy Staton captured the dog, which will be held in the Rowan Animal Shelter for 10 days in quarantine to determine if it has rabies.
The owner has the option to turn the dog over to Animal Control to be destroyed.
Leonard Wood, Rowan County Health Department director, said late Thursday that the dog will be declared a dangerous dog and euthanized.
Marcela Bravo was treated and released from Carolinas Medical Center-NorthEast, according to a hospital spokesman.
According to police, EMS transported Kevin to NorthEast. A spokesman said Thursday night the hospital had no record of him at that facility.