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KUSA - A 19-month-old boy was attacked by a pit bull in a parking lot near the King Soopers store in Commerce City at East 62nd Avenue Sunday night.

Officers responded to the lot around 7:30 p.m.

Investigators say the 90-pound dog was tethered to a pole when the attack happened. They say the boy was trying to give the dog a hug when it mauled his neck and face. The child suffered severe facial injuries, but is expected to survive.

Police say the dog's owner is a transient who was present at the time of the attack. Police are interviewing him.

Pit bulls are illegal in Commerce City. The city has a vicious-dog ordinance and charges are pending, according to police.

Officers restrained the dog using catch-poles, though it continued to fight and be very aggressive toward them in the process. The dog was ultimately transported to the Adams County Animal Shelter where it died from asphyxiation which occurred during the restraint process.

Commerce City police say a young child suffered severe injuries in a dog attack Sunday night. 9NEWS at 6 a.m. 07/14/14.

(KUSA-TV © 2014 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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