Pit bulls allegedly had history of breaking fence, running at large, & biting passers-by
CARTERET, New Jersey––COVID-19 quarantine precautions and pit bulls who were not safely contained collided on March 16, 2021 in a Carteret, New Jersey back yard.
Three-year-old Aziz Ahmed, “playing in his new home’s yard for the very first time with his two brothers and mother,” according to Brian Thompson, who covers New Jersey for NBC New York, was reportedly disemboweled and his mother, trying to defend him, was critically injured when two unlicensed pit bulls belonging to back street neighbor Santos Rodriguez, 55, burst under an already often damaged chain-link-and-slats fence, loose at the bottom, to attack them.
COVID-19 confined victims to home
“It was the first time [the victims] had been able to play there after moving from their Brooklyn apartment in February, a source said to be close to the family told News 4,” Thompson said. “Between all the snow that came during the month and the cold weather that kept the snow around longer, the family hadn’t been able to spend time in their yard.
“On top of that, the entire family also recently came down with COVID-19. The last day of their quarantine was Tuesday,” Thompson mentioned.
Tuesday was the day of the fatal mauling.
Mother is “ripped apart”
“Little Aziz Ahmed died from massive injuries after he was airlifted to a local hospital,” elaborated Brittany Kriegstein and Larry McShane of the New York Daily News.
“A relative at the family home recounted how the boy’s 10-year-old brother watched the attack helplessly from a window in their new home in Carteret,” wrote Kriegstein.
“’Imagine how traumatizing to see that,’ said one of the boy’s cousins as the family gathered Thursday for the funeral. ‘To have to see that, his mom fighting for his brother’s life.’”
Continued Kriegstein, “The mother remained in critical condition, recovering from her severe injuries and howling in anguish over the death of her son.”
Said the cousin, “She wakes up and screams, ‘My baby! I couldn’t save my baby!’ He was ripped apart. She’s ripped apart right now.”
“Lovable guys” ran at large
The Santos Rodriguez home had a “Beware of the Dog” sign hung on a gate, but multiple neighbors agreed that the pit bulls, Rocky and Logan, often escaped to run at large, sometimes injuring passers-by.
The “Found Animals of Carteret NJ” Facebook page posted photographs of both Rocky and Logan on October 23, 2020, saying “These two lovable guys were running in the area of Laurel Street,” the street to which the Ahmed family moved a little over two months later.
“If anyone knows who their owner is,” the “Found Animals of Carteret NJ” posting finished, please have them contact the Carteret Police Department.”
This raises the question of why, if Rocky and Logan were impounded in October, they remained unlicensed the following March.
“Dog owner Santos Rodriguez, a father of five and grandfather to five more, told the Daily News that police and his attorney advised him not to speak about the fatal attack,” Kriegstein added.
“’This is a traumatic thing, and I have no idea what happened,’ said the clearly upset Rodriguez. ‘You can’t even imagine,’” Kriegstein finished.
But what happened required little if any use of imagination for people aware that pit bulls have killed more than 500 Americans over the past 40 years, more than 400 of them since the American SPCA, Best Friends Animal Society, Humane Society of the U.S., and Maddie’s Fund initiated multi-million-dollar campaigns in the 2005-2007 time frame to promote pit bull adoptions and repeal the breed-specific laws that had protected many communities from pit bull attacks.
Bluntly put, two more pit bulls quite predictably “went pit bull,” with thoroughly foreseeable consequences.
Aziz Ahmed’s mother twice asked neighbor to control his pit bulls
“Relatives said Ahmed’s wife raised concerns with the pit bulls’ owner on two separate occasions in the past three months, arguing that they posed a potential threat,” reported Snejana Farberov for Dailymail.com.
“’The mother went to the neighbor two times to let her know the dog is wild. It’s out of hand. And you know, the owner laughed it off,’ one person said,” wrote Farberov.
“Photos taken at the scene,” observed Farberov, “show cinder blocks and a plastic table resting against the fence separating Ahmed’s property from their neighbor’s, possibly in an attempt to keep the dogs out of the family’s yard.
“Neighbors who spoke to ABC 7 New York also claimed that the pit bulls were known as a menace in the area,” Farberov continued.
“Those pit bulls bit people all in this area,” said a female neighbor, mentioning that she would go out of her way to avoid them.
“Santos Rodriguez’s pit bulls Rocky and Logan were euthanized after being shot [at the scene] by arriving police officers,” said the New York Post.
Offered a GoFundMe page posted by co-workers of the victim’s father, Tanveer Ahmed, “The young mother fought with all she had to save her little boy. “Despite her efforts to save her son, his injuries were too severe. Even with the help of first responders little Aziz could not be saved. Aziz’s mother is still fighting for her life and will never fully recover from the scars she now has to live with.”
Reported a Carteret Fire Department first responder from the scene, “I have a 3-year old with total evisceration, open to the face, head and thighs.”
“The boy was transported by helicopter and his mother was transported by ambulance to receive emergency medical care,” summarized MyCentralJersey.com crime and courts reporter Suzanne Russell.
“Tanveer Ahmed’s co-workers at Coney Island Auto Parts are now trying to raise money to help pay for the boy’s funeral, as well as raise enough money for another home for the family,” Russell added.
The Coney Island Auto Parts fund and an aid fund set up by Carteret Borough between them raised $50,000 in pledges from more than 450 donors in just two days, but that was unlikely to cover more than a fraction of the costs to the Ahmed family.