Dog Attack Victim's Neighbors 'All Heroes'

One neighbor pulled a young girl to safety as two rottweilers attacked, and two others used a baseball bat to get the dogs off the girl's grandmother.


It was an average Wednesday afternoon -- until around 6 p.m., when the dogs got loose.

The dogs were Kim Miller's two rottweilers -- both about two years old and weighing between 70 and 85 pounds each. They somehow unlatched a gate as she was putting out garbage, according to police, and raced around the corner from her home at 35 Edwards St. and attacked a 6-year-old child playing in the yard at 440 Shelton Ave.

The little girl's grandmother, Cynthia Reed, 47, look down from her second-floor apartment and saw the attack taking place, according to police. She rushed down to help the child and in the process became the victim herself.

Monique Jones lives in the apartment below Reed. She looked out her window and saw the dogs on the child.

"I ran out and yelled for her to come to me and thank God she did," Jones said. She scooped up the girl and pulled her into her apartment, slamming the door behind her.

The dog were atop the girl but hadn't injured her, Jones said. But once they saw Reed, it was a different story.

"They grabbed her by the neck and they grabbed her by the throat and they pushed her down the stairs," Jones said. Reed literally came tumbling down, she said, and the dogs dragged her into the street.

"It was awful," said Latrice Sanchez, 14, a Hamden Middle School student who lives across the street and witnessed the attack.

"They jumped on the back of her neck and knocked her down," she said, "and dragged her into the street like an alligator would."

That's when her father Curtis Wilkins spied what was going on.


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"My first thought was to go grab a bat," he said. He and another man, Kenneth Lewis, beat the dogs until they finally released Reed.

"They had her by the back of the neck," Wilkins said. "I knew I had to do something - I was in the right place at the right time and I knew I had to step up and do something."

And what he and Lewis did in all probability was save Reed's life, according to Hamden Police spokesman Capt. Ronald Smith.

"They did a fantastic job," he said, "and they're all heroes as far as I'm concerned."

Reed spent two days in the hospital and returned home Friday afternoon. She wasn't up to speaking to the media, Jones said, but wanted to thank everyone for the concern shown to her Wednesday.

"She wants to say thank you for everyone coming to help her and for her neighbors saving her life," Jones said. She underwent surgery while she was hospitalized, Jones said, and is now receiving at-home nursing services.

The dogs have been a problem for the past few weeks, Jones said. They had been loose and in the yard several times and had taken items such as soccer balls from it, she said.

"I tried to do the neighborly thing and go over there and talk to them but they wouldn't answer the door," she said. Miller, the dog's owner, came over to get them during the attack, and the dogs obeyed her command to come, Jones said.

"She told the dogs 'go home,' and they went with her," Jones said. "She never came back to see how [Reed] was."

Attempts to contact Miller Friday were unsuccessful. She was issued two infractions for allowing a dog to roam and four counts of animal nuisance, Smith said. 

It will be up to Hamden Animal Control, the Town Attorney, the Police Department and the courts if the animals are euthanized, Smith said.

Both dogs are in police custody, one at the North Haven Animal Shelter, where Hamden leases space for its impounded dogs, and the other at the New Haven Central Hospital, where it is being treated for head injuries from the bat beating.

Ellen Nosel October 08, 2012 at 09:31 PM
Unfortunately, these dogs will pay the ultimate price for their owners ignorance and negligence. The owner should be banned from ever owning dogs again, but, unfortunately, that probably won't happen. She will get herself another couple of dogs which she will not own responsibly and it is just a matter of chance whether those animals will meet the same fate as their predecessors.
Karen's Dog Training Blog November 13, 2012 at 02:42 PM
Question. If the dog were attacking the 6 year old, why was the 6 year old not injured? How can you say they attacked the 6 year old and then go on camera and state that the 6 year old was not injured? Sounds odd to me. Perhaps the 6 year old was afraid of dogs and was just screaming out of fear? I don;t know how you can state the 6 yr old was attacked if no injuries - sounds like she was not touched by either dog....
Helgaguillen Ramos November 28, 2012 at 04:12 PM
I think this attack,smells fishy, the grandmother was in the second floor,when she saw the 2 rotwillars attacking the child.she rushed down to help the child and in the process became the victim herself.another neighbor who live in the apartment below the grandmother said she looked out of her window and saw the dogs on top of the child she ran out an yelled to the child to come to her. and the child did. The statements doesn't make sense. How come the grandmother rush down to save the child and in the process she became the victim herself? The child was safe because the neighbor call the child and the child was safe in her apartment, and how come 2 dogs attacking the child? and the neighbor call the child and the dogs let the child go? All this is a lie, the grandmother wasn't attacked when she was saving the child from the dogs because the child wad in the neighbors apartment. the statement from the neighbors said the dogs were a problem because they took the soccer balls from the yard.I think the 2 dogs are inoccent the grandmother and the neigjbord beat the dog and the dogs deffend themselves from the bat attack. When grandmother went down the child was inside her appartment. if you read this new properly you will see the lies
maria January 07, 2013 at 12:43 AM
For your info my husband help that lady she has no reason to lie about anything i was there my kids were there. The dogs shouldent had been roming the streets anyways u was not there who are u to say she's lieing. there's no need for all that non sence that u are say you don't have nothing to say don't say shit


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