The 10-year-old girl who lost part of an arm in an attack by two pit bulls two years ago said she was afraid she would die during the attack.
“They knocked me down and they started to walk away,” said Erin Ingram, during the trial of the dogs’ owner, Twyann Vaughn, who is facing two counts each of reckless conduct, violation of the vicious dog act and violation of the rabies ordinance. If convicted, Vaughn could spend up to five years in prison.
After she got up and started running again, the dogs attacked Ingram.
“They started biting me,” Ingram said. “They were biting me on my arms and around my ankles.”
The victim said she knows the defendant. The girl had gone into Vaughn’s house once when she was locked out of her home. The dogs were in the room but were not aggressive toward her, Ingram said.
“They let me rub them,” said Ingram, whose family once owned a pit bull.
Other than that day, Ingram said she never interacted with the dogs.
“I heard a lot of bad things about them.” said Ingram, who also said she once had to jump on an outdoor table to avoid the dogs.
The day of the attack, after finishing her chores, Ingram received phone permission from her father to play basketball outside. While she was looking for friends to play basketball with, Ingram said, she saw the dogs and ran toward her house.
Then the attack occurred.
“I wanted them to get off of me,” Ingram said before showing her injuries to the jury.
Family members sobbed as Ingram, who wore a prosthetic until it got too small, said she has had to learn how write and carry a tray at school.
Her surviving hand is “sort of” the same, Ingram said. “It’s not as strong as it was.”
And she has had to give up playing hand games.
Ingram said she sometimes has nightmares about her other arm being bitten off by animals.
Marquis Edwards, 17, son of the defendant, said he had the job of caring for the pets on a daily basis.
Edwards, who said the dogs were “very trained,” said he had no indication that the neighborhood children were afraid of the dogs.
“They played with the dogs,” Edwards said. “They knew the dogs very well.
“I was never told they were scared of the dogs,” Edwards said. “Why wouldn’t they tell me or my mom?”
When asked whether he was surprised about the dogs’ attack, Edwards said he was “more than surprised.”
“I guess she triggered something to make them act that way,” said Edwards, who broke up when he saw a poster-sized photograph of one of his dogs, dead and bloody. “She’s been around the dogs before.”
The trial is scheduled to continue on Friday.