Vigil held to remember 4-year-old mauled by pit bulls

- The bitter cold did not stop this community from coming together in prayer to remember 4-year-old Xavier Strickland.

"Fun loving little guy, loved everybody,” said Clarence Strickland, the victim’s father.

The little guy lost his life on Wednesday when four pit bull dogs attacked him while he was walking on the sidewalk with his mother near Bayliss and Lodge.

"It was terrifying. Terrifying to just see them do that to my son and couldn't help him,” said Lucille Strickland, the victim’s mother.

Lucille Strickland says she tried everything in her power to protect her son, but the vicious animals were too much.

Police say the dogs took the young boy back into their owner's yard where they got loose from, and mauled him to death.

It's tough to hear how his older brother is grieving.

"I can't remember him because it's going to make me cry,” said Clarence Strickland Jr., the victim’s brother.

The mother could only use one word to describe the past few days.

"Hell. Hell. Hell, because this is tormenting, you know. It's hell. Hell,” said Lucille Strickland.

Dozens of people came out to Saturday's vigil to remember four year old Xavier Strickland. This recent tragedy on Detroit's west side has brought up the topic if the pit bull breed should be banned from the City.

Others who came to remember the  say the responsibility falls on the owner.

"I'm not saying it's a bad idea to ban pit bulls, but I think its people who raise pit bulls the wrong way, those are the dogs that should be banned and the owners should be put away for doing that,” said Paul Slaughter, who owns a pit bull.

Three of the dogs were shot, and a fourth was taken in by Detroit police.

People who live in this neighborhood say the dogs have gotten loose before.

Right now, a warrant is being reviewed by the Wayne County prosecutor's office, and the wait continues on if charges will be filed against the dog’s owner.
 


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