Witnesses Recount Child's Tragic Death at Pittsburgh Zoo

Two Patch readers explain what they saw when African Painted Dogs attacked a 2-year-old boy who fell into their exhibit Sunday at the animal attraction in Highland Park.

As Pittsburgh police continue their investigation into the death of a 2-year-old boy who was mauled after falling into the African Painted Dogs exhibit at the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium, witness are telling their accounts.

Two of them commented to Patch.

A person using the name Dreamweaver wrote: "I was at the zoo today in the restaurant right outside of the Painted dog exhibit and witnessed it...very scary. We have often thought just how unsafe that exhibit is, nothing to stop anyone from falling. Nothing I want to witness again."

Kathleen Lucas was another witness who shared her comments on Patch.

"I was there, at the exhibit. It did not take several minutes for the dogs to attack, they did so immediately. It was a horrible scene that I wish I was not part of and witness. My prayers go out to the mom and family."

Homicide investigators have interviewed several witnesses and zoo personnel, and the investigation is ongoing, police said. 

They are asking anyone who witnessed this incident to call the Pittsburgh Homicide Unit at (412) 323-7161.

Vicki dottle November 05, 2012 at 03:12 PM
I agree with kathleen ..fence way too short and nothing to stop anyone from,leaning or falling over into the.dog yard below. Very sad to hear of this.happening. we go very often all year long . Thought and prayers to the family whose lives changed in an instant forever .
Jessica hays November 07, 2012 at 04:10 AM
As a mother of a young boy myself, I could only imagine the pain this family is going through. all I keep hearing is "y would anyone let your child up on a rail?" As parents we dont think about every "what if" because theres alot of them. Cant no one say they would do things differently because nothing is certain, just like the zoo promises us and our children safty. I know when I go to the zoo my 6 yr old loves 2 run ahead and climb on rails never had I thought twice that he may be in harms way. So NO its not his mom fault and anyone who says so should be ashamed of themselves. This family is going through hell as is. We bring our kids 2 the zoo with the understanding they would be safe and make it home, this lil boy didnt make it home safe. But these dogs live another day? Dont keep enough dogs if u cant maintain them, put up bigger fence, keep trained staff on ea display and be aware. Both parents and zoo on that last one. Oh yea the dogs involved need put down. Mothers fault?, NO! zoo? yES! I dont care what anyone says we all allow our children 2 stand on fences/ gates @ zoo. I know I DID, if u say u didnt than ur a liar! Jess hays


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