The boy was in an apartment in the East New York neighborhood with his father and two younger siblings when the attack happened, the police said.
He was initially taken to Brookdale University Hospital and Medical Center with grave wounds to his head and neck and was later transferred to Long Island Jewish Medical Center.
Mr. Wilson, 41, said that he sprinted the two blocks to his brother’s apartment and found a terrifying scene. His nephew, Jeremiah Rivera, was lying face down on the floor, with the flesh torn off much of his cheeks and forehead.
“I pray that boy lives, but he won’t have a face anymore,” he said.
“The dogs are usually so friendly and great with the kids,” Mr. Wilson said, still trembling from the events.
Mr. Wilson added that his half brother tried to be very responsible with the animals. The dogs had recently been vaccinated and registered, he said.
Jeremiah’s younger brother and sister were not seriously wounded, according to Mr. Wilson and the police.
Missie Dunham, 31, said she had often see Mr. Rivera walking around with the three children, playing with them and buying them food.
On Monday, a 75-year-old woman in Queens was killed when her mastiff, one of several dogs she kept in her apartment, bit her torso and arms repeatedly. The mastiff was known around her Long Island City neighborhood as an aggressive animal.
(NY Times - Feb 17, 2017)