Keeping children safe around dogs is a challenge when adults fail to supervise. Earlier this week, a 2-year-old boy in Boger City, NC wandered away from his house, out of his yard, and into the yard of a neighbor. Once inside the neighbor’s lot, the boy was mauled to death by two German Shepherds.
Now a family grieves the loss of Karson Gilroy, whose parents left in the care of relatives while the tragedy occurred. Apparently a cousin of the deceased had left a door open, then didn’t notice until 15 minutes after the boy disappeared.
One relative said noise may have attracted the toddler. "He probably heard the dogs barking or something, he loves dogs,” one relative said. Searchers found Karson on a pile of leaves next to the smaller of the two dogs.
The mother wasn’t sure what happened. “Maybe he tried to go after them, I don't know,” Misty Gilroy said. “He just got tangled up.”
Dog owner Wayne Oliver is befuddled over the tragedy. Both dogs were chained in the yard. "They don't bark, don't grab,” he said of his pets. “They’re just as docile as could be, "There's nothing I could have done. The dogs were in the yard and chained."
The Lincoln County Sheriff's Office will conclude its investigation this week. Two detectives first spotted the missing boy after searching for an hour, said Lt. Hal Kluttz. Detectives attended a counseling session with other officials involved in the search for the missing boy. The district attorney has not decided whether to file charges. The dogs will be kept at the Lincoln County Animal Control office for 10 days before being euthanized.
Wrongful death claims may result from fatal dog attacks. In this particular case, the dog owner appeared to have done nothing wrong. His dogs were chained on his property. The negligent caregivers who were responsible for the toddler carelessly left the child unsupervised. Learn more about wrongful death claims in North Carolina.