Parsons said his office received a call for assistance at 11:46 a.m. Wednesday from a residence in the Seminary community, an area located not far from Big Stone Gap. By the time deputies arrived, the child’s father had already left with the infant for Lonesome Pine Hospital in Big Stone Gap.
Parsons said deputies were told that the dog, “a large shepherd type,” attacked and mauled the infant as she was in a bassinet. Parsons said the baby suffered injuries primarily to the upper body and head. He said she was transferred to Holston Valley Medical Center in Kingsport and then to the University of Tennessee Medical Center, where she died just after 4 p.m.
The incident “is being looked into” by the sheriff’s office, the Lee County Department of Social Services and the county animal control department, Parsons said. The dog is currently “locked up in the local pound,” he said.
There are two older children also in the home, and Social Services personnel “called to make sure they are in good shape,” Parsons said.
“We are going to continue to look into it and see what develops and of course consult with our commonwealth’s attorney to see if any charges are to be placed.”
Identities were not being released on Wednesday, Parsons said.