Foster care agency 'heartbroken' over infant killed by dog in Clearwater

Shavon Grossman and her daughter, Khloe Williams, in a photo from Grossman's Facebook page. Credit: Facebook
Shavon Grossman and her daughter, Khloe Williams, in a photo from Grossman's Facebook page. Credit: Facebook
Published Oct. 6, 2018

The agency that oversaw the foster care of an infant killed by a dog has offered condolences to the child's family.

Seventh-month-old Khloe Williams died after a dog attacked her Friday afternoon in Clearwater at the home of her foster father's parents. The family's mixed-breed dog bit the child, according to the Clearwater Police Department. Paramedics rushed to the scene to treat the baby, but she died later at Mease Countryside Hospital.

The child had been placed in a foster home licensed by A Door of Hope on May 15, according to Eckerd Connects, a private company that contracts with Pinellas and Pasco counties to provide foster care services.

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"Everyone at Eckerd Connects is heartbroken," Chris Card, Eckerd's chief of community-based care said in a statement Saturday. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to all those who loved this precious child."

The dog was taken into custody by Pinellas County Animal Control, said Doug Brightwell, the Pinellas County director of animal services. It is being held on a 10-day rabies quarantine. If it does not have rabies, the family may decide to keep the dog or have it euthanized, Brightwell said. Animal Control has not yet contacted Williams' foster family about the dog.

"This is the first fatality we've had in this county from an animal attack in quite a number of years," Brightwell said.

The Florida Department of Children and Families said in a Saturday release that Williams' foster family had no previous record of "abuse or neglect."

Police and DCF are still investigating the child's death. Eckerd Connects said it was cooperating with the investigation.

"She was not even big enough to walk or crawl or anything," the child's biological mother, Shavon Grossman, told Fox 13 in an interview Friday. "I don't understand how she was even around a dog that could do this."

Grossman could not be reached for comment Saturday.