Deerfield Beach Teen Hospitalized After Brutal Pit Bull Attack

DEERFIELD BEACH (CBS4) – A 13 year old Deerfield Beach girl is lucky to be alive after it took at least four people to rescue her from a pit bull attack. Broward County Sheriff’s Deputies said it is not clear what caused Tayla Johnson’s dog “MJ” to attack her. She’s known the dog since she was born.

Her brother and cousin came home and saw the attack going on through the bedroom window at their home. Investigators said the boys went in and hit the dog with keys and a broomstick. But none of that fazed the 75 pound dog. So they the boys went next door and grabbed their neighbor Sammie Huggins. He repeatedly hit MJ with an aluminum baseball bat.

“It would just let go for a second and then it would go right back to attacking like it was just locked in on pretty much killing this girl,” said Lamar McThay, a neighbor and Palm Beach County Fire Rescue Paramedic who came to the teen’s aid.

When that didn’t work investigators said another neighbor came over and shot the dog in the leg with his 9mm handgun. The dog continued its attack so the neighbor shot it four times before shooting it point blank in the head and killing it.

The group brought the teen out onto the front lawn where she was bleeding heavily.

“She had a significant amount of blood and I didn’t get the extent of her wounds until I started to peel back and look a little further,” said McThay. “She had a probably a four or five inch gash in her face that you could see through to her gumline.”

Tayla is now recovering at Broward General Medical Center.

Her brother said she is doing well and expected to make a full recovery.


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