Derica Souder, the child’s mother, said that her seven-month-old son, Semaj, had his skull fractured and his heart stopped after the dogs’ attack in November 2022. Doctors told her that it was unlikely the child would survive the injuries, according to Fox 5.
“His nose also broke,” Souder said. “His bottom eyelid is pushed in. He has bites all through his legs, back, arms and stomach. His ear was also detached, so they had to stitch it back together.”
Souder said Semaj was allowed to leave the hospital after a month, but the infant still has multiple plastic surgery and neurology appointments ahead, according to the Daily Star.
She noted that hospital workers have been shocked by how well Semaj has improved, noting that even at this point when they arrive for appointments, all of the people want to see the child.
Whenever the two go to appointments, Souder said, “everybody runs in his room and they be like, ‘Is this the miracle baby? Oh my gosh, that’s the miracle baby!”
Semaj’s caregiver reportedly left the baby with her daughter, and both children were attacked by the pit bulls. Souder said she didn’t know the child would be near the animals, and it is unclear what happened prior to the attack.
Fox 5 reported that the caregiver owned the two dogs that carried out the attack, but the Daily Mail also reported that the caregiver’s boyfriend owned the dogs.
Souder noted that Semaj sometimes has a hard time sleeping and wakes up yelling. She also noted that he suffered brain damage in the mauling.
“I just pray and keep it in God’s hands,” Souder said.
According to D.C. law enforcement, no one has been arrested. However, both of the pit bulls have been put down.
A GoFundMe page was set up to help the family and it has brought in over $13,000 out of their goal of $5,000.
According to an article published by People in November, a D.C. police spokesperson said another woman was also critically hurt in the mauling, who members of the family told Fox 5 was the daughter of the dogs’ owner.
The family is also pushing for legislation to prevent such attacks from happening.