A man in his 80s was killed and a woman was critically injured in a horrific dog attack in Texas on Friday afternoon. Firefighters arrived just after 1:45 pm in what has been described as a "horrific" scene as the man was being pulled by the savage creatures as emergency personnel headed to the area.
The firefighters were compelled to use their pickaxes in order to intervene and free the canines from their hold. A third person was also bitten on the hand by a dog during the brutal attack. Both the injured individuals were transported to the hospital and are receiving treatment.
San Antonio Fire Department Chief Charles Hood said the responding firemen had to use pickaxes and pipe poles to fend off the dogs and praised their "heroic" conduct. "Horrific scene -- horrific for the people that experienced this and, again, horrific for our firefighters that were a part of this, basically, a rescue to save themselves and to save these people," Hood said.
The attack took place on the sidewalk and left an 80-year-old man and a woman, both thought to be tourists, mauled, according to Hood. They were both sent to a nearby hospital. The woman is still in serious condition, while the man died due to his injuries, according to Hood.
Another person was bitten on the hand and sent to a hospital, according to Hood. He added that a fire captain was also bitten in the leg while retaliating to the assault.
According to Shannon Sims, director of San Antonio Animal Care Services, two dogs that were found to have been involved in the attack as well as a third dog from the same family that was loose and outside the property were taken into custody.
The dogs, American Staffordshire terriers, will remain with Animal Care Services throughout the investigation into the fatal attack and be housed in quarantine cages "for the foreseeable future," according to Sims.
Hood said that although it is highly likely that the dog's owners will be charged in connection with the incident, it is not yet known whether they will do so. The entire incident, according to Chief Hood, had probably left the involved firefighters "emotionally scarred."
Authorities stated that because the investigation is still in its early stages, it is too soon to say whether or not any charges will be brought.
According to Sims, the animals were previously involved in a 2021 incident that led to minor bites. After their quarantine period was through and the owner had paid the recover fees, the dogs were returned, he claimed. He claimed that because no affidavit from a victim or witness had been submitted, "we could not move forward and a dangerous dog classification."
Concerns about animal abuse and aggression were raised in other calls made by neighbors over the course of the previous two years.
All of the affected canines have been collected by San Antonio Animal Care Services and are now being held in quarantine kennels where they will stay up until further notice.