Man's nose torn off in pit bull attack

April 1, 2012 10:00:00 PM PDT
A Chicago man who had his nose bitten off by a pit bull is talking about the attack involving a neighbor's dog.

The attack happened Friday inside a building on the city's Far Northwest Side.

Bill Lesinski, 47, says doctors were not able to re-attach his nose. He now faces extensive plastic surgery and months of recovery time.

"I want it known that it's not the breed; it's the owners and how they raise the dog," Lesinski told ABC7.

Lesinski has known his neighbor's dog, a pit bull named Monster, since he was a puppy. That's why the attack is devastating -- not just physically, but emotionally -- since Lesinski is concerned about the dog's future.

Lesinski has owned pit bulls for 20 years and says he has never had a problem with any of his pets. But he says his neighbor's pit bull has a history of aggression, biting his dog, Tyson, attacking him and causing devastating injuries.

"I was just in shock that the dog did this because I was just playing with the dog prior to him biting me - about five minutes prior to that," he said.

Lesinski was visiting his neighbor and, after playing with his pit bull, stopped to take a closer look at his neighbor's stereo.

"I bent over, crouched down to look at the subwoofer, when the dog lunged forward and grabbed me by the face and ripped the front of my face off," he said.

Lesinski's nose was torn off. He was taken to one hospital where doctors tried treating him. But by the time he was transferred to Northwestern Memorial, it was too late for plastic surgeons to re-attach it.

"Basically, I'm going to have to be like this for the next 9-12 months because of ... procedure after procedure that needs to be performed," he said.

He will need at least six surgeries to reconstruct his face which could rack up $200,000 in medical bills. Lesinski just started his own towing business and does not have insurance.

"I want him to get back to work, I want him to get back in better spirits and to see that something like this doesn't happen again," said his fiancée, Petrina Simmons.

The pit bull has been impounded by Chicago Animal Care and Control and is the subject of a dangerous dog investigation.

Still, Lesinski says the dog is not at fault.

"If you don't spend time training the dog, raising the dog, teaching the dog, disciplining the dogm, just like you would your own child, then you're going to have these type of problems," he said.

Jacob Binda is the owner of Monster the pit bull. He agrees with the description of what happened but says his dog is not aggressive. Binda was cited by Chicago Police for not having a license for the dog.

Monster's future will be decided when Animal Care and Control completes its dangerous dog investigation, which could take 30 days.

A fund has been set up to help Lesinski. An account has been set up through TCF Bank under the name "Bill Lesinski," or "pit bull attack on Bill Lesinski." Donations can be made at any TCF Bank branch.