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Pit bulls attack pack of boys in Raleigh

Posted September 4, 2012
Updated September 5, 2012

— A dog owner in Raleigh was cited after authorities say he let his three pit bulls run loose through the Southall neighborhood on Sunday, terrorizing a pack of bike-riding boys and a child's birthday party.

At least three people were injured by the dogs.

Cooper Nunnery, 12, was one of them. He said he was out for a bike ride with some neighborhood friends when the dogs came tearing down Easthampton Drive.

"I was looking down, kicking at the dog to make it get back," Nunnery said Tuesday. 

The pit bulls chased the boys, and one of the animals bit Nunnery and 10-year-old Joey Brigante.

"It started to jump up and attack me, and bit me in the leg," Nunnery said. "I threw my bike down. When I did, it kind of scared the dogs."

Neighbor Josh Thomas rushed to help the boys while the dogs took off down the street.

"I heard it first because there was a lot of screaming and a lot of dogs barking," Thomas said. "I was just tending to Joey, who was bleeding a lot." 

Further down Easthampton Drive, the pit bulls approached a child's birthday party, but a man picked up a rock to fend them off. He was also injured. Three injured when loose dogs terrorize Raleigh neighborhood Owner cited after loose dogs injure three

Robert Moore, Nunnery's mother's boyfriend, came home a short time after the attack. He said the dogs' owner should be held accountable.

"Cooper is very lucky, and I think something should be done about these dangerous animals," Moore said. 

Animal control officers cited Jason Tamburri with letting dogs run at large and failing to provide proof of rabies vaccine. Tamburri said the dogs escaped from his yard and that, as a parent, he is very upset about what happened to the two boys.

"I feel horrible," he said. "I was a nervous wreck, very worried about it."

He added, however, that the adults who chased the dogs made the situation worse by throwing things at them.

Tamburri said he recently moved to the neighborhood and had misplaced his veterinarian records, but he will turn proof of rabies vaccinations over to animal control.

The dog that bit the boys was taken to the Wake County Animal Shelter to be quarantined for 10 days. Tamburri said the dog has never hurt anyone before and that he will send the animal to live with his family out-of-state when it is released from quarantine.


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  • SueInNC Sep 12, 2012

    To "must b crazy" - I'm not a fan (at all) of pit bulls, BUT, I know several people who own them and have been loving, responsible pet owners, so their dogs have never attacked anyone, ever. So, don't blame the breed; blame the completely irresponsible dog owner! I know a golden retriever with no prior biting incidents who nearly took off one of my best friends' husband's hands! They were playing with a chew toy (pull game)...so it is NOT the breed...it's the circumstances and often it's the owner's fault. All dogs have the potential to bite! ALL. So get yourself educated a bit more so you can avoid such ignorant comments.

  • SueInNC Sep 12, 2012

    The dogs are not in the wrong - the OWNER is. The owner should be fined $1000 per incident, more if a child/person is permanently mamed, maybe that would keep these owners from being so irresponsible. Also, the dog(s) should be taken away from the irresponsible owner, put up for adoption. I'm glad no one was seriously injured, but what a scare all these people went through. Shame on the dogs' owner! Stiffer fines/penalties might just work to reduce these incidents.

  • CraftyMo Sep 6, 2012

    All dogs can attack people. It is up to the owner(s) to keep their dog(s) shots current, on leash or in fencing to protect others. If the owner is not responsible with their pet, whatever breed of dog it may be, there is alays a chance of injury to an innocent party. There are many breeds as some have said on here that are genetically predisposed to be aggressive - German Shepherds, Rottweilers, Collies, Great Danes, bull dogs...to name just a few. Any dog in a stressful situation has the capacity to bite. It is NOT the dogs fault though the dog is usually the second victim - it is the owner's fault.

  • must b crazy Sep 6, 2012

    The owner should not "be in jail". That is ridiculous and solves nothing. He is liable and should pay every cent of the medical bills and any loss work time the parents incurred dealing with this.

    You're living in a fantasy world to keep defending this breed. Own them if you want, but they are a geneticly predisposed trainwreck. Regardless of whether the owner is a worm or a saint, the dogs aren't victims. They were bred to be fierce and that trait is buried way down deep in their instincts, ready for a trigger.

  • piene2 Sep 6, 2012

    When I ride my bike I carry a spray bottle of concentrated ammonia, which is available at some janitorial supply outlets. It works a lot better then pepper spray. Trust me, one shot of it in the chops and any dog, regardless of size or temperament is finished for several hours.

  • 4221380 Sep 5, 2012

    Congrats to the author of "pack of boys". I am not impressed. After this report, I believe we should have pit bull season instead of dove season. Too many years I have read of their aggression, (pit bulls) and I have many years. Now it is the time to eliminate ownership of more than one dog. That is a start. If this aggression continues by pit bulls, then further a law. PERIOD

  • trianglerelic Sep 5, 2012

    Funny, when does a group of boys become a "PACK"...

  • mamadog Sep 5, 2012

    Everybody loses when you all start to argue about the breed, whether you're for or against these dogs, because the focus gets turned away from the main culprit, the owner, who gets away with a slap on the wrist. The weak laws that we currently have already excuses the owners from a lot of the responsibilities that should naturally come when you own any dog, but more so when you own a powerful dog. The main "penalty" right now is that the dog gets taken away and euthanized which doesn't really mean much for these owners. After all the trauma that their carelessness caused, they're still free to go get another dog and do the same thing over again. I'm a dog trainer specializing in aggression and in a lot of the dog bite cases I go to, the owners typically claim total shock that their "sweet, harmless dog" could have done such a thing and act as if they had nothing to do with it. True accidents rarely happen and save for that freak incident, the humans are 100% responsible and we've g

  • wownow Sep 5, 2012

    I am sorry for what happened to the people who are injured. It breaks my heart the dogs had to be pitt bulls. They can never catch a break. I have owned well over 17 pits and not one has ever shown a mean bone. Best family dogs ever. I hope nothing happens to the dogs.

  • silverflash Sep 5, 2012

    I make it a point to tell people when I see them at the local park, that there is a leash law in wake county. If they are aware, then perhaps they can afford to pay me if I get bit.