Page last updated at 16:56 GMT, Thursday, 9 October 2008 17:56 UK

Baby back home after dog attack

A baby who witnesses said was dragged in the jaws of a bull terrier for 60 yards has returned home from hospital.

Amir Santos, who is about a year old, suffered leg injuries in the attack in Mitcham, south London, on Wednesday.

Three other people were attacked by the dog - said to be called Asbo - which was shot dead by police.

The animal's owner, a 29-year-old woman, was arrested on suspicion of having a dog dangerously out of control. She has been released on bail.

Abdul Khan, a National Express driver on the 152 Croydon service, intervened to rescue Amir during the attack which took place at 1120 BST.

It (the dog) was going absolutely wild
Jackie Haggis, witness

The baby returned home with his parents on Wednesday night.

Mr Khan said, being a parent himself, he was spurred on to intervene by the thought of his own 18-month-old daughter.

He said: "I saw the baby being eaten by the dog and the mum was crying and trying to protect her baby but she was unable because she had another girl with her.

"She was in a terrible state, she was crying. I couldn't imagine the pain the mum was feeling."

He said the mother lost the grip on the child in the struggle and the dog started running towards him.

He and his colleagues ran and shut themselves in the van, but the dog still tried to attack them.

A spokeswoman for National Express said: "He [Mr Khan] is now at home recovering. We are being told his actions were heroic."

'Really concerned'

One of Mr Khan's colleagues was also bitten on the arm by the dog.

A woman in her 50s was also bitten and is being treated for leg injuries, while a fifth person received facial injuries and has now been discharged from hospital.

All of the victims were taken to hospital but none sustained life-threatening injuries, police said.

A worker at Amir's nursery, Nought to Five Plus, said: "It's shocking. We're really concerned and will work to support the child."

Jackie Haggis, a 38-year-old foster carer from Tavistock Crescent, Mitcham, witnessed the attack from her house.

She said: "I saw the dog with a baby in its mouth. It dragged the baby about 60 yards across the green. It was going absolutely wild."

She described how the dog refused to let go of the child despite being hit with a fire extinguisher and sticks.

Police said the dog's owner was bailed to return in mid-November.


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