Community Mourns Boy Fatally Mauled by Dogs on His Way to School: 'It Just Broke My Heart'
Logan Braatz, 6, was killed in the mauling, while 5-year-old Syari Sanders was rushed to a hospital to be treated for severe wounds from the attack.
As loved ones gathered to say goodbye and mourn the Georgia boy killed in a dog attack that also critically injured a little girl last week, 911 calls from the deadly incident have revealed that other children were at risk of being harmed by the animals, officials said.
A group of five- and 6-year-old children were walking with adults on Tuesday to their school bus stop in Atlanta when they were suddenly attacked by two dogs that authorities have called a pit bull and a pit bull mix.
Logan Braatz, 6, was killed in the mauling, while 5-year-old Syrai Sanders was rushed to a hospital to be treated for severe wounds from the attack, which adults tried in vain to stop, 911 calls from the incident obtained by WTVM showed.
“It’s grown men chasing dogs, they just keep attacking kids. Oh my God, this little boy, oh my God!” one caller exclaimed, telling the dispatcher that a little girl was "lying down on the ground bleeding."
Neighbors attempted to slow the injured children’s bleeding, as other callers said adults were trying everything they could think of to stop the dogs from getting to the kids.
“They ran one of them over,” a caller said, noting that someone may have purposefully hit one of the dogs with their vehicle to stop the attack. “The other one is just running loose.”
Cameron Tucker, the owner of the dogs believed to be behind the attacks, was arrested and charged with felony involuntary manslaughter and reckless conduct.
“He has a fenced-in backyard, so how the dogs got out, we do not know,” Tucker’s attorney, Cinque Axam, told WXIA.
He remained in custody in the Fulton County Jail on $70,000 bond on Monday, online records show.
The fate of the dogs was not immediately clear.
Little Syrai is expected to remain hospitalized for about a month, relatives said on a GoFundMe page.
Logan was laid to rest at a private service Sunday, but hundreds of loved ones and strangers touched by the tragedy flocked to a memorial fund created in his honor.
“It just broke my heart when I saw this on the news and I can't imagine how devastating this must be for you. I pray for strength and healing for each of you who loved and adored your sweet baby,” one donor wrote on the YouCaring page, which by Monday had raised $20,500 of its $25,000 goal.
“No child deserves the brutality that cost Logan his life! My heart goes out to the family of Logan,” another person posted.
Logan’s family retained an attorney after his death in an effort to affect change and prevent the incident from happening again, they said.
“This attack didn't occur in the 1800s, it did not occur in a rural area, and it didn't occur because a child was trespassing where he shouldn't have been," Attorney Andrew Goldner told FOX 5 News. "This could have been prevented."
Since the attack, the city has reportedly cleared a wooded area on the path children take to school and Atlanta Public Schools have put a new bus stop in place.
Plans are also in discussion for placing additional restrictions and regulations on owners of so-called dangerous dogs, according to reports.
"Logan was a wonderful little boy — energetic, happy, and full of joy. Logan simply made everyone around him a better person. Logan was a huge sports fan and loved the Atlanta Falcons and Georgia Bulldogs. He was described by his family as an “old soul” who even at the young age of 6 took care of everyone around him,” a statement issued by the Braatz family and obtained by WXIA said.
"The next few days are a time for mourning. After that, the Braatz family has asked us to get all of the answers for them regarding why and how this happened,” the statement said.
"There will be plenty of time in the days, weeks, and months to come to ask the hard questions about why this tragedy was allowed to happen, what could have been done to prevent it, and, importantly, what can be done to prevent another similar event."
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