Only on 7: 'Bloodthirsty' dogs attack children playing in Northeast

Andrew Wilkis, right, describes the vicious dog attacks he was injured in Friday night as he stepped in to save children. Photo: ABC7

Nearly three days after two dogs attacked a group of children and the man who tried to protect them, the search is still on for both the animals and their owner.

The Northeast neighborhood of Trinidad was terrorized Friday night when two large, approximately 190-pound dogs got loose and started attacking - and the entire thing was caught on surveillance camera.

According to surveillance video from a nearby apartment, obtained exclusively by ABC 7 News, the large, white "Cane Corso" dogs on the loose began to stalk children in in the streets around 9 p.m. The children fled, but the dogs trapped two children who jumped on top of parked cars in an attempt to get away from the dogs.

"It was like something out of a horror movie," Tiara Bryant, the mother of one of the children said as she watched the loose dogs chase her son. One of the dogs eventually jumped up on top of the car with the children.

The attack lasted for about 13 minutes on Queen Street as the two white dogs chased three kids, aged 10, 11 and 13.

"It seemed like they were hunting. Like they were going after people," Aliya Rocker-Patterson, a neighbor said, "I see children on top of cars with big white pit bulls...trying to get them. It was absolutely insane."

It was then that Andre Hawthorne, an usher for the Washington Nationals, was coming home from the game and stepped in. He was armed with a knife and his courage. He can be seen on the tape trying to run the dogs off with his knife.

The dogs then turned on him, tossing him around like a "rag doll" neighbors described, which allowed the children to flee safely. However, the attack left him with wounds on his left arm and hand which are now infected, he says. He also is undergoing a series of rabies shots.

"They drug him off of the car and was shaking him in the street and the neighbors across the street were throwing things out the window to try to distract the dogs but they wouldn't let him go," his wife, Shirley Perry said, "I was terrified, because all I could think about was the dog getting the kids."

Neighbors, according to the tape, were able to help wrangle the dogs, now injured, away from Hawthorne. The dogs were seen limping away on the surveillance tape.

"I got bitten on the arm and I got stitches, they took some meat out between my two fingers," Hawthorne said at the site of the incident today.

No one in the neighborhood knows exactly who the dogs belong to and no neighbor has stepped up to take responsibility. But many neighbors have said that they've seen the dogs through the window of a nearby apartment building. But never, they say, have these two dogs been seen outside.

"We don’t know where they are," MPD Cmdr. Andrew Solberg said. "We got a report that someone pout them in a car that night and took them away."

At the scene, a trail of bloody paw prints still leads down the sidewalk, up the steps and into the apartment building. Inside, there was blood on the floor and ceiling of the apartment's lobby. Neighbors are demanding that their neighbor, whomever they are, will take responsibility.

"These dogs were obviously trained to be cruel to be mean to be vicious," another neighbor and eyewitness said, "It's bloodshed."

And the children and adults today said they'll continue to look over their shoulder in the neighborhood until they know the dogs are still not on the loose.

"Any dog that comes by you hear the chain, people are reacting. People are scared now and we need to know that these dogs are caught," neighbor Aliya Rocker-Patterson said.

Police and animal control were in the neighborhood today investigating the incident. Meanwhile, neighbors are applauding their own local hero.

"I had to sacrifice myself," Hawthorne said. "I don't think of myself as a hero. This is my community."

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