Brewton toddler killed during Rottweiler attack
By By Kerry Whipple Bean
A tragic Sunday afternoon event has found a Brewton family at the center of attention.
Taylor Kitlica, an 18-month-old girl who lived with her family on McGougin Road was fatally attacked by a stray Rottweiler tied in the yard of the home around 5 p.m. Also injured in the Sunday attack was two-and-a-half-year-old William "T.J." Kitlica, brother of the girl. His injuries were not life threatening, according to Escambia County Sheriffs officials. He was treated at D.W. McMillan Hospital and released with minor bite wounds on his back.
"It's hard to see her picture," said Ashley Kitlica, mother of the attacked children. "But I hope that by seeing my baby's face, the person who owns the dog will know what he bred and what he turned loose."
According to Kitlica, the dog had wandered into the yard of their home less than an hour before the attack.
"The dog came to us," she said. "It had a collar on it and was well fed. We tied it up hoping to keep it from roaming away and getting lost. We hoped the owner would come by and see the dog and be able to get it back."
The owner, who is yet unknown, did not come to claim the dog before it made the fatal attack.
"We were just trying to do a neighbor a favor," Kitlica said. "And it took my baby."
Kitlica was not at home at the time of the attack but arrived just after ambulances and law enforcement officials arrived at the scene of the attack.
"I had gone to town to pick up my six-year-old daughter's birthday cake," Kitlica said. "I was on my way home when an ambulance passed me. I got really concerned when it turned on McGougin Road. When I pulled into my yard, the ambulance was already there, and my whole world turned upside down."
Kitlica said her husband had been working on a Jeep in their yard over the weekend and was gathering tools when he heard a noise.
"He didn't hear the door open while he was picking up the tools," Kitlica said. "The children followed him out without him knowing it. He heard a noise and looked up to see Taylor with the dog and went to help her."
Kitlica said her husband got Taylor away from the dog and was taking her inside when he realized his son was approaching the dog.
"He looked back and saw T.J. going toward the dog," Kitlica said. "By the time he could put Taylor down and get to him, the dog already had a hold on him. Tom was able to get T.J. away from the dog and go back to help Taylor."
Tom Kitlica, father of the attacked children, performed CPR on the Taylor twice before D.W. McMillan Ambulance Service workers arrived and took over.
Taylor was transported to McMillan Hospital but died on the way, Kitlica said.
"She never made it to the hospital alive," Kitlica said. "She just didn't make it."
Although she had died while being transported to the hospital, doctors and other medical personnel continued life-saving efforts for another 30 minutes at the hospital Kitlica said.
"She was torn up so badly," Kitlica said. "You just never expect anything like that to happen to you. We have large dogs, but we raised them from babies with our babies and we have never, ever had any problems at all with them."
The dog that attacked the children was taken from the premises by the Humane Society of Escambia County and was euthanized by a local veterinarian, according to Maj. Mike Murphy with the Escambia County Sheriff's Department.
"This is sad and tragic incident," said Grover Smith, Escambia County sheriff. "A strong law is needed for law enforcement authorities to deal with vicious animals, especially ones that have the potential to maime or kill someone."