CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Fla. — A 9- year-old girl was violently attacked when a neighbor's dog broke into her home. Allissia Jones was playing inside her home with her cat on November 24 when the neighbor's dog ran into the home and began to bite and scratch her.
Allissia's mom Anastasia Jones was home during the incident. She says two teenagers were outside walking the dog without a leash when it ran into her home.
"The dog came in my house, in my living room, in the kitchen, and everything," says Anastasia Jones. "They watched it, laughed, they heard her screaming, and kept walking."
Other area residents say they heard Allissia’s screams and came outside to grab the dog. Allissia was badly injured and was taken to the hospital for her multiple bite and scratch wounds.
Anastasia wants to press charges against the owners but she is not sure what organization should hold the owners accountable.
"The (Charlotte County) Sheriff’s department is saying animal control has to be the one to press charges but animal control is telling me the Sheriff's department does," says Jones. "I've been calling every morning and yet, nobody knows what they’re doing and I’m not getting any answers. I want something done!"
Florida Gulf Coast University professor and lawyer Dr. Pamella Seay provided some insight into the Jones' situation.
"This is part of what makes animal involved activity so very difficult because you do have to do an investigation and you don’t have the ability to ask the animal," says Seay. "You have to go through a process of speaking with he persons involved, and the owners of the animal, and anyone who may have been a witness. It's a matter of gathering all that information together. This is time-consuming and that's very frustrating for the people who are involved. You know it happened, and you want that dog off the street."
Seay says the dog owners broke Charlotte County Ordinance 1-4-31. The law states that it is illegal to not have your dog on a leash on any public street or another person's private property without expressed consent.
Since this ordinance was broken, Dr. Seay says the owners will have to pay.
"In this particular instance I would recommend to the parents of that child that they find out who’s dog this is because that person by law is responsible the cost of treatment of that child," says Seay.
Fox 4 reached out to Charlotte County Animal Control who confirmed that an investigation is ongoing.