Mother's tribute to dog victim

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The Independent Online

The mother of a one-year-old boy killed by a pet rottweiler has left an emotional message for her son on a social networking website.

"RIP my lil angel," she wrote yesterday. "Mummy knows you're still here. Love you always and forever."

Rebecca Hirst, who turned 18 yesterday, also paid tribute to her sister, who fought to free Archie-Lee from the dog's jaws. "I'd like to say to Kara we are all so proud of her she tried," wrote Ms Hirst. "She's a hero in my eyes and will be respected for what she did for the rest of her life." The boy was spending Christmas at his grandparents' house in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, when the dog attacked him.

Kara, Ms Hirst's 16-year-old sister, was babysitting her two younger sisters, aged six and seven, and the baby. The seven-year-old girl was carrying the infant to the back door when the dog snatched him from her.

Kara hit and kicked the dog several times, but it would not let go of the child. She then went back into the house and called the emergency services.

Police described the dog as powerful and weighing between seven and 10 stone. Armed officers destroyed the dog at the scene and said he "clearly represented a danger to others".

Archie-Lee died in hospital on the evening of the attack, last Friday.

The Government said that it had no plans to amend dangerous dogs legislation or add rottweilers to the list of banned breeds.

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