17-month-old attacked by dogs

June 25, 2021

A St Ann mother was forced to stone mongrel dogs who were mauling her 17-month-old daughter at their home in Lower Buxton near Brown's Town on Tuesday.

The child, Omelia Campbell, was bitten all over her body but her condition is not considered critical. She remained in the St Ann's Bay Hospital up to Thursday.

"She not too bad right now. She was all in pain but the antibiotic that she getting helping her well," the child's mother, Sylvan Cover-Campbell, told THE WEEKEND STAR.

According to her, the attack happened sometime after 5 p.m. on Tuesday as she was washing clothes. Her two older daughters were with Omelia when they left to gather goats nearby. Cover-Campbell said she instructed them to leave Omelia in the yard.

"The child was standing there waiting. The dogs rushed come out. She seems to be running away from them so she dropped and they grabbed her," the mother explained. Cover-Campbell said one of her daughters saw what was happening and cried out for help just as she also heard the infant's cry.

"When mi run from the line, when mi see the whole a di dawg dem all bout pon har, five a dem, who naw draw clothes ah bite, a draw like dem waaa draw har somewhere. When mi see di dawg dem mi haffi fling two stone," she said. "Di dog dem run, and mi grab har up and mi say 'Jesus Christ' the way how mi frighten. When mi look pon dog bite, all inna her head. The dog bite the ears but no bite it off, pop out the earrings outa har ears." Enraged, Omelia's father used a machete to chop two of the dogs, killing one.

Cover-Campbell said her husband's actions caused a fuss with the relative who owns the dog. She said that she will not go back to the yard with her daughter until the dogs have been removed.

Commander for the St Ann police, Superintendent Dwight Powell, said the Jamaica Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was contacted and was scheduled to visit the extended family home to take control of the other dogs. Powell said the police have visited the premises and investigations will determine if charges are to be laid.

It is the second reported dog attack in the parish in 10 days. On June 12, Bavette Watson-Balfour, 61, suffered several bites after being attacked by two dogs. This latest attack also revives memories of the horrific attack on five-year-old Mickele Allen last year. He is still recovering.

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