A mother alleges her daughter was attacked by a Great Dane while trying to escape a neighbor’s house.

Neva R. Schwartz, through her mother Courtney E. Schwartz, filed a lawsuit June 27 in the Madison County Circuit Court against James Cates.

In her complaint, Courtney Schwartz alleges her 8-year-old daughter, Neva, was playing with James Cates’s daughter at Cates’s home at 712 LaSalle St. in Collinsville on June 3 when a Great Dane entered the room where the children were playing.

The children ran for safety as the Great Dane entered the home, but Neva could not escape and the Great Dane caught her, knocked her to the ground and viciously bit her in multiple places resulting in bite marks on Neva’s torso and right leg, the suit states.

Because of the incident, Neva Schwartz was emotionally traumatized and experienced pain and suffering while her mother Courtney Schwartz incurred medical costs, the complaint says.

Courtney Schwartz blames James Cates for causing her daughter’s injuries, saying he negligently failed to keep the Great Dane under control, failed to ensure the children were not in the premises with the dog, failed to inspect the household and failed to keep the Great Dane in a fenced-in perimeter.

Courtney Schwartz seeks a judgment of more than $50,000, plus costs. She is being represented by John H. Leskera of Leskera Law Firm in Collinsville.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 14-L-915.

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