Pit Bulls Allegedly Unleashed by Owner to Maul Man Have Been Put Down

The two pit bulls that mauled a man in the Bronx after their owner allegedly deliberately unleashed them for attack have been euthanized, animal care officials say.

The dogs were brought to Animal Care Centers of NYC's Manhattan care center following the Sept. 11 attack, which left the man with a severed ear and several bites, near their owner's Belmont Avenue residence. They were put down about two weeks later.

The dogs' owner, 55-year-old Cynthia Oliver, was charged with several counts of assault and reckless endangerment. Oliver was released on $35,000 bond at her arraignment last month; information on her attorney wasn't available.

Oliver was holding her two pit bulls on leashes, but let go of the restraints, according to the criminal complaint. Police said Oliver let go of the leashes on purpose though they didn't say why.

The two dogs attacked 62-year-old Francesco Bove, who at the time was walking to a nearby church where he worked, said his son, Anthony Bove, adding that his father is an artist and animal lover.

The two dogs mauled Bove, lopping off his right ear and leaving him with bites to the chest and arms.

Anthony Bove said a priest who arrived at the scene offered to administer his father the last rites.

A 46-year-old man who attempted to help Bove was also bitten and suffered lacerations to an arm. Both men were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.

The vicious attack was captured on video by a witness (WARNING: the video shows graphic violence). Several people can be seen coming to Bove's aid as they struggled to get the dogs away from him. Bove screamed for help, witnesses said.

"People were trying, but they was also scared of getting too close because they didn't want to get attacked," Renee Norris told NBC 4 New York at the time.

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