Hartman Mayor Sent To Hospital After Incident Involving Dog

HARTMAN (KFSM) -- Hartman Mayor Rita Griffin was taken to the hospital Tuesday (April 10) after an incident involving a dog, according to neighbors and eyewitnesses.

Neighbors and witnesses told 5NEWS she went to visit residents on Main Street, and when the homeowners opened the door, a dog came out and knocked her down. Family member said she hit the pillar and was knocked off the porch.  The family said the dog then came back on Griffin before the owner pulled the dog off of her.

"The woman that lived there was sitting on the ground with the mayor and the mayor had a gash on her nose and which was bleeding," Elleen Steele, neighbor said. " She was hurting so bad, she couldn`t move very much and so we were all concerned about her."

Steele said paramedics were not able to get her on the gurney because she was in so much pain.

She was taken to Johnson Regional Medical Center in Clarksville, but has been released and is recovering at home.

The family said Griffin has internal bruising and injuries to her face, but is expected to be okay.

Neighbors said the mayor may have gone to the home to speak with the residents about allegations of animal cruelty and trash on their property.

"So many things that has happened that we as neighbors have had inflicted on us because of this," Steele said.

Neighbors are worried and said they've worked tirelessly alongside the mayor about the issues they've had with the homeowners and their animals.

"We would take hay over there for the horses and the mule and they ate the bark off the trees trying to keep from starving to death," Donna Dobbs, neighbor said. "No water, no water at all."

Neighbors said several animals including pigs have died at the home and they're hoping finally something will be done.

"It's just a bad thing that someone had to get hurt finally because of it," Steele said.

"They should never ever have another animal of any kind," Dobbs said. "Not again."

5NEWS has reached out to the Johnson County Sheriff's Office, but the incident report is not ready at this time.

The residents of the home where the alleged dog attack happened were not home for comment on the incident.

Mayor Griffin was not available for an interview as she is home recovering from her injuries.