7-year-old boy mauled to death by pit bulls in Massachusetts

Investigators believe the boy was attacked after entering a fenced-in area where the dogs were kept.

CBS Boston

LOWELL, Mass. -- A Massachusetts town is mourning the loss of a young boy who was mauled to death by two pit bulls. 

CBS Boston reports the 7-year-old boy was attacked at around 6 p.m. Saturday in Lowell. 

The Middlesex district attorney's office says a preliminary investigation suggests the boy was attacked after entering a fenced-in area where the dogs were kept.  

"Right now, our thoughts are just with the family of this little boy, the neighborhood, as well as our first responders," District Attorney Marian Ryan said. "Just a terrible, terrible loss of a child." 

David Swiniarski, who lives nearby, said "it was actually horrific to watch" the attack unfold. 

"Two 100-, 120-pound pit bulls just getting his neck, his legs," Swiniarski said. "Everyone was screaming. No one knew what to do."  

The boy was pronounced dead at the scene. His identity is being withheld pending family notification. 

Neighbor Roger Rodriguez said he couldn't imagine the dogs would hurt anyone.

"The dogs to me were very mellow dogs, very nice. I used to play with the dogs sometimes," Rodriguez said. "It's too bad, all of my prayers go to the family."

Authorities say one of the pit bulls escaped after the attack. The dog was later captured and has been euthanized. The other pit bull is in the custody of the city's animal control.   

At this time, no charges have been filed.