A 4-month old infant was killed by a family pit bull in Dayton, Ohio on January 9.
Mother Asleep on Couch
UPDATE 01/15/20: The Dayton Daily News obtained the search warrant. On January 9, just before midnight, the baby's father arrived home and found his baby, 4-month old McKenzie Terwell, dead on the floor. The infant had been mauled by a family pit bull. The mother of the child, Mary Shoup, was sleeping on a couch, possibly after taking prescription medication. Terwell died from blood loss due to extensive soft tissue trauma, according to the county coroner.
When police officers arrived at the Vermont Avenue home, the baby's father, 21-year old Parker Terwell, was on the front porch with the baby's body, reports the Daily News. "Mr. Terwell said he just arrived home, and his girlfriend and mother of the child, Mary Shoup, was asleep on the living room sofa," states an affidavit written by Dayton Police Detective Karina Sulek in the search warrant request. "Mr. Terwell informed officers that Ms. Shoup is on prescription medication."
Medications prescribed to Shoup were seen next to the sofa, the affidavit states, including benzodiazepines and SSRIs. No criminal charges -- pending or otherwise -- have been announced thus far. The search warrant, however, lists endangering children as a possible charge. One pit bull was seized from the home after the deadly attack. According to neighbors, this was a multi-pit bull household; the couple kept two or three pit bulls in the home's fenced yard.
WDTN reported additional information, including that the multiple prescriptions for the infant's mother were found to have side effects, such as drowsiness and insomnia, as well as cognitive dysfunction (brain fog), a diminished ability to think, remember or reason. The baby's father also told police officers he got rid of a bong before they arrived. It is unknown if either of the infant's parents will face charges. So far, no funeral information for McKenzie has been announced.
01/13/20: Family Dog Kills Infant
Dayton, OH - On January 9, just before midnight, Dayton police officers were dispatched to a home in the 100 block of Vermont Avenue for reports of an infant not breathing. Officers found the baby girl had died after being attacked by the family dog, according to Lt. Jason Hall. The infant died of blood loss due to extensive soft tissue trauma, according to Montgomery County Coroner Dr. Kent Harshbarger. The baby girl was later identified as 4-month old McKenzie Terwell.
The case remains under investigation by the Special Victim's Unit. Police did not release the dog breed information. The animal was taken into custody and is being held in quarantine while the investigation is being conducted. Terwell's death marks the fifth fatal dog attack in Montgomery County since 2012. Four of the five deaths occurred while under the leadership of former Dog Warden Mark Kumpf, the most notorious being the savage death of Klonda Richey in 2014.
In a 6:13 pm update, WDTN confirmed the dog is a pit bull. "The dog, who Dayton Police tell us is a pit bull, has since been quarantined and the incident is under investigation by the police department’s Special Victims Unit," reports WDTN. It remains unclear if the baby was visiting the home. In 2017, the very first time infant Barrett Hagans stayed overnight at his father's home in Pike Township, Ohio, one of his father's pit bulls killed the baby while he slept in his bassinet.
On Tuesday, text of the 911 call was released. The baby's father told the dispatcher, "I just got home, I don't know I just saw my baby on the floor and I don't know what to do." He told the dispatcher the baby's mother supposed to be with her, and now the baby is not breathing. "She's cold. She's gone," he said. The father said he tried to do CPR on the baby, but achieved no results. "I'm sorry," the caller said. "I don't know what happened. I don't know what happened."
Infants Killed by Dogs
In October, we released new data on pit bull fatality trends over a 14-year period, 2005 through 2018. Trends include: 66% of fatal dog maulings are perpetrated by pit bulls; 49% of infant deaths due to dog maulings are inflicted by pit bulls; and 73% of adult deaths due to dog maulings are inflicted by pit bulls. Half of all infants (< 1 year old) killed by dogs are killed by pit bulls, primarily family pit bulls. This infant was alone at the time too. Criminal charges should be mandatory.
09/29/17: 2017 Dog Bite Fatality: Family Pit Bull Fatally Mauls Infant in Knox County, Ohio
Law enforcement departments across the United States should release consistent "baseline" information to the media and the public after each fatal dog mauling, including these items.
Family canine and a human being in the picture. What could possibly go wrong? Maybe uhm…. … Someone removed the warning label from the canine?
They sure didn’t remove the warning labels from their windows, now did they? Not one, but two “Beware of Dog” signs.
Methinks they won’t be able to plead ignorance.
Such a horrible tragedy. Wish the frequency of these attacks would slow down
This is so heartbreaking. I don’t know why so many people even take the chance with a new baby. My friend wants me to babysit her grandnieces and nephew, also four months. They have two dogs, one is a pit mixed with lab I think. I don’t know how to tell her I don’t want to because of that, so I have to think of some other excuse. She was talking to a neighbor the other day and said oh those dogs love those babies, they would never do anything, they are so protective. I’m guessing that happened here to. Any dog with a baby this age. But with a pit you wouldn’t even have time to save the baby, it would happen so fast. RIP little man.
I know you are trying to be considerate and avoid an awkward situation by not telling her the real reason you don’t want to babysit. But YOU deserve the opportunity to speak candidly. Bending over backwards to spare the feelings of a person who keeps a pit mix around infants is likely a futile gesture anyway.
Additionally, you have your own safety to consider. If you were babysitting those children and the pit mix decided to do the unthinkable, you would be the one obligated to defend those babies with everything you could muster, even if it meant your life.
We’ve seen this before.
Not your circus, not your monkeys, not your martyrdom. These are HER blood relatives, not yours. And HER dogs, not yours. You are under no moral obligation to put yourself in a situation which your gut is telling you is not a good idea. Listen to your gut.
Yes. If they want you to babysit so bad, and your only reason for saying no is the dog, they can bring the kids–JUST the kids–to your house to sit. Be kind, but be honest: you make it a policy not to enter a home with a pit bull or pit mix in residence, so if they want you to babysit it can’t be in the home with that dog, period.
Stick to your guns; this is your life and safety at risk.
Oops, baby girl…..I was thinking of my friends….what a horrific way to lose a child.
I wish owners could “get educated about the bread” without kids having to die. I don’t care when the owners get licked to death anymore. I really don’t. As messed up as it is to say this, I actually find it funny. Sadly the little ones that are truly harmless, innocent bystanders will continue to take the brunt of the damage. I guess the devil takes care of his own as they say.
Yep, eats his own children. Apparently this family had 2 to 3 pit bulls always running around in the backyard because one just isn’t enough. Supposedly someone was supposed to be watching the child and so now the babysitter is getting blamed for what the “family” dogs did. The babysitter had no idea he/she was also pet sitting three pit bulls.
Cathy C, take note to this. You would likely get the same blame when your friend’s pitbulls attack.
Wow……not even half way through January and it’s full on Pitbull slasher city already ……..
The creepy part, there are dead kids and innocent ppl walking RIGHT NOW , and they will die a very painful, horrific death this year……just because we allow this vile breed into our community’s.
Wonder how many death we’ll have this year.
Unless and until, the national media exposes the facts and figures, not much will be done. These stories show up on local newscasts and are described as accidents. This is what the coroner wrote about this little angel…”an accident.” No, it’s a crime that’s repeated all over the country and the world. We have blood sport beasts with high prey drives around children and babies. That’s a crime, failure to protect children, just like requiring car seats for their safety.
Yes, the media reports only the stories that they wish to select, and they only say about the stories what they want to say. Of course, it should be illegal in any civilized society to select potentially dangerous animals as pets. Of course, the adults were criminally negligent when they allowed their dangerous animal to slaughter their child. Our society is not based on the Spirit of Love, and therefore both of these two things are not against the law. People are not in the Spirit of Love, so they select dangerous animals as pets.
This is just sickening. I grew up in Dayton many years ago and don’t remember even seeing a pitbull. Now they seem to be an unstoppable epidemic. They should be banned. The babies have no choice in the matter and the parents have obviously prioritized their right to have pitbulls over the safety of their children.
Truly horrifying. That baby deserved to be in a safe and loving home as all innocent children should be. There’s more vetting and paperwork to adopt a dog, than to walk out of a hospital with a newborn. This poor, little angel was sleeping on a dog infested floor with her mother passed out on the couch. That’s bad enough, but to keep these bloodthirsty freakish maulers running loose around an infant? The father is as guilty as the mother. I hope they’re brought up on criminal charges of neglect.
How these infant deaths can continue with little or no culpability on the part of the parents for giving a deadly dog access to their child is beyond me. But I’m going to write out some thoughts.
They may have known the dog was dangerous and not cared due to sheer parental apathy and drug use so access was allowed despite knowing the harm that could befall the baby.
They may have known the dog was dangerous but it “somehow” gained access to the baby, ignoring that it is foolish to keep a zero-mistake dog and depend upon crates, doors and baby gates to protect a child.
Those signs posted on their home show that they at least can’t claim they did not believe that their dogs are potentially dangerous. So if they know pit bulls are dangerous but still have them, they are either callous unfeeling parents or parents who put too much trust in a system to keep their baby safe.
In the above cases, they are decidedly negligent and I don’t see why any court would say otherwise.
But… they may have believed the lie that the dog was safe to have around a baby, as they’ve no doubt seen in scores of “nanny dog lying with the baby” photos. Who knows… they may have taken some of these same photos to prove how sweet their dog is with baby McKenzie! (Too bad they’ve probably had time to deactivate Facebook pages and such.) In this case, are they willfully ignorant or just ignorant? Can they be held liable for believing the myth that’s perpetuated EVERYWHERE one looks these days? Dog “experts” claiming pit bulls are safe pets, people vouching for how great they are with their children, and media which races to put favorable pit stories on television or internet but which leaves the words “pit bull mauling” out of news headlines and instead just says “dog bite”?
I recently read comments on another pit bull truth site by the mother of baby Triniti (can’t recall last name) who was killed by a boyfriend’s pit bull named Kilo. The one with the chilling 911 call in which for minutes this mother pleads with the dog to stop killing her little girl. This mother said (not quoting) that she doesn’t blame the people who believe the myth… they have been duped and misled by lies just as she was. But now she warns others not to trust pit bulls and the deception that they are good family dogs. Kara Hartrich’s mother does the same. Both of these mothers admit that they believed the lies and genuinely thought the dogs were safe with their children.
Should parents who have believed the pit propaganda be given a pass? Or is there too much counter-evidence out there now for anyone to claim ignorance?
Just some thoughts.
“Medications prescribed to her was seen next to the sofa. …” What kind of medications? Well, we can rule out anti-narcissism medications.
I think cognitive dysfunction is a requirement of pitbull ownership.
I do have compassion for those who believe the lie and learn the hard way. I’ve written on here several times, I once believed and repeated the myths.
I didn’t have any reason to think that this story I kept seeing on Animal Planet, in dog books, by nonprofit organizations, and celebrities was wrong.
I found this site by utter happenstance and luckily I was open-minded enough not to dismiss it. I’d like to think it has spared me some tragedy in my own life.
It very well may have, Packhorse! I’m thankful to see that minds are being changed with reason, logic and the truth. There’s a great need for those three things in our emotion-driven culture in which a flower crown on a pit bull must mean it’s a safe family pet. There’s a sea of misinformation and deception out there… I’m glad you found the truth and believed it.
At one point in time, I actually looked at adopting a pit cross, but when I met it, I was unnerved by its strangely standoffish behavior. That’s not the kind of attitude I had come to expect from dogs. I have since learned from behaviorists like Sue Sternberg that that’s a big red flag. I consider it a bullet dodged.
I almost rescued a pity from a local shelter. I mentioned it to My elder sister, a dog trainer,
who set me straight.
The Pitt apologists are everywhere, and I sent hours watching adorable videos of happy, capering Pitt “babies.”
We are being sold a bill of goods.
Pitts were selectively breed for strength, tenacity, and aggression. Breed specific behavior cannot be eradicated by a loving family.
I might be off base here… But I think there’s more to this story, or rather, I don’t think the father is telling the truth.
A while ago the FBI published a study on 911 calls and how people with guilty knowledge of the murder/death they’re reporting had certain markers in their 911 calls that innocent people did not have. The brief quotes from the 911 call show two of those markers already: the father started his call with an alibi (“I just got home, I don’t know I saw my baby on the floor,”), and accepted the death of his infant (“She’s cold, she’s gone,”).
I hasten to say that those two things alone do NOT prove anything, and it is entirely possible this is just an innocent man who walked into a horrible tragedy. Those two markers–any markers–are not conclusive proof of guilt or even a little proof of guilt. They are just…things that make my radar ping a little bit, and I wonder if perhaps the attack actually happened when both parents were home (and high) and they came up with a “Mom took her prescription and accidentally fell asleep, Dad was out,” story in an attempt to avoid charges. It seems kind of weird that the mom would leave the baby on the floor while she went to sleep on the couch, doesn’t it?
But again, I am NOT saying there’s definitely something the parents are hiding, I’m just saying I wonder.
The moment “taking medications and lying down” was mentioned, I became very suspicious. This is a get out of jail free card for the mother and also starts the blame game. Guilt and negligence are ducked. I have a bad feeling that this case is going to turn into one of two things:
1. It is the doctor’s fault for not educating and warning her about side effects or the medication, of mixing the medication with alcohol or other medications, of taking too much medication, or of the possibility of addiction.
2. It is the drug manufacturer’s fault for the same reasons in 1.
Notice, neither of these things blames the people responsible or the breed.
Guess what, no surprise, Mary Shoup has a drug problem and thank goodness because this makes it harder for her to pass the blame:
Yes, exactly. It will divert attention and blame from the parents and dog. It just pings my radar, like I said.
I’m with you, Anion. Along wIth death by hot car, infant death by pit bull should be looked at beyond the “tragic accident “ category. Everyone sees these stories. It should come as no surprise that certain folks take advantage of these narratives.
No criminal charges !??
Roflmao…..these ghetto parents belong in jail !
Reckless endangerment and unvoluntery manslaughter for starters !