911 Calls for Baby Mauled by Dog Went Unanswered

San Diego parents called for help twice, but no one picked up on the other end
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 25, 2016 8:46 AM CDT
911 Calls for Baby Mauled by Dog Went Unanswered
This photo provided by the San Diego County Department of Animal Services shows Polo in custody after it mauled to death a 3-day-old boy, police said Friday.   (Uncredited)

Police in San Diego say a couple whose 3-day-old baby was mauled to death by the family dog made two unsuccessful 911 calls before getting frustrated and driving the boy to the hospital themselves, the AP reports. Police Lt. Scott Wahl told KNSD-TV Saturday that the parents waited 28 seconds before hanging up their first call, then tried again and waited 34 seconds before giving up. Police say the couple was in bed with the baby Thursday night when the dog was startled and attacked the baby; the child was declared dead at the hospital.

Cops say the family has their condolences and that they, too, are frustrated by slow 911 response times. They say their operators are understaffed and that 73 calls came in during the half-hour span when the parents called. The dog, a 2-year-old Great Dane-terrier mix named Polo who had no past reports of aggressiveness, was taken by the San Diego Department of Animal Services for a 10-day quarantine to ensure it's not rabid, KFMB reports. Polo will be put down after that time if the baby's parents don't come to take him back, per a DAS rep. (A 9-year-old was killed by his sister's pit bulls.)

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