Two women have been arrested in connection with the death of their four-year-old boy, who was mauled to death by family dogs. The boy's mangled body was found in the backyard of a home in El Paso, Texas.
Brittany Brooks, 27, and Ashley Brooks, 29, were arrested at a family member's home and charged with injury to a child, a second-degree felony, KFOX14 reported.
Police say that Jacob Brooks was left in an enclosed trampoline in the backyard of the home on 27 July, the New York Daily News reported. The boy was attacked by a pack of "aggressive" family dogs.
Neighbour Ramon Payan told the El Paso Times that the dogs "practically ate" the youngster.
According to KVIA Channel 7, a neighbour attempted to rescue the boy during the attack. Sebastian Hernandez said his brother scaled the yard fence in an attempt to reach the boy. He was able to remove a dog, which then proceeded to try to bite him as well.
When emergency responders reached the home, Jacob was dead.
The family had several dogs of different breeds and sizes, which were taken to animal control following the attack. The dogs have since been euthanised.
"I understand they didn't feed the dogs, 'cause they'd be crying all night and my next-door neighbour said they've be crying all night," neighbour Silveria Murillo said. El Paso Animal Services reported that the family's four dogs were starving and unsocialised.
In a statement to KVIA in August, the boy's aunt claimed the dogs had not been aggressive in the past. "Accidents happen in seconds, and this could have happened to anyone with pets," she said.
The women were booked into the El Paso County detention facility under $75,000 bonds each. According to the El Paso Times, Brittany had multiple traffic warrants, with bonds totaling $6,300, while Ashley had traffic warrants with bonds totaling $630.