Elderly woman remains in the ICU after a pit bull attack

BALTIMORE - A blood-stained sidewalk is where police say an 78-year-old woman was attacked by a pit bull.

On Friday evening, Athena Neofitou was walking to her mailbox in the 700 block of Ponca Street in the Greektown neighborhood, when the dog named "Blue" started attacking.

"It was not on a leash. It ran across the street and bit her and dragged her down to the sidewalk," said Sam Kosmas, who lives a few doors down.

The woman's family told us off-camera that much of her lower lip was ripped off.  Doctors had to reconstruct her face.  She boke her left arm in two places and crushed her fingers. 

Henriett Rouzer says the dog ran from her porch and scared the elderly woman.

"Normally, he's in the house on a chain cause the door can come open and shut," Rouzer said.


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"By her screaming she startled him. He turned around and jumped on her. She was smacking at him, she was hitting him, so he figured that she was attacking him. And he bit her," said Rouzer.

Rouzer says she ran to help the woman before she was rushed to Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center. She showed us where Blue typically stays locked inside.

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But that's not what happened Friday evening. Police told Rouzer she will be fined and most likely have to pay the woman's medical bills.

That's not her top concern since she knows what it's like to lose a loved one.

Rouzer has the injuries to show she escaped the Hollins St. fire in 1994 that killed nine relatives, including her three sons. Then in January 2010, she lost her mom and three relatives in a fire on Oliver St.

Now, she takes full responsibility for the dog attack; her concern is with the woman she didn't know.

"My prayers are with her. And I'm hoping she comes out okay," said Rouzer.

The dog was taken by animal control. According to a spokesman with the health department, he will remain in quarantine for 10 days. 

At that point, there will be a hearing to determine if the dog should be euthanized or returned to the owner.

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