North County Woman's Dog Attacked By Pit Bull

Authorities Say Pit Bull Belongs To Homeless San Diego Woman

A North County woman is calling for justice after the pit bull which nearly killed her dog was returned to its owner.

Last Saturday, Iris Riddell said she was walking her Wire Fox Terrier, Alex, at a Vista shopping center when a pit bull jumped out of a car window and latched onto Alex's head.

"I stood there frozen and I said he's not going to make it," said Riddell.

Riddell said three men worked to pull the pit bull from her dog, but when that didn't work.

"They finally threw water on the pit bull and he let go of Alex," said Riddell.

Staples and a drain had to be inserted to treat a gaping wound on Alex's head. Alex now wears a plastic cone around his head to protect the wounds.

Sarah Verdick, who witnessed the attack, said she was amazed when San Diego County Sheriff's deputies responded to the scene, but returned the pit bull to its owner within minutes.

"The lady who owns the dog said it was a dog that was going to be put to sleep and she took it. I said, 'Why wasn't it put to sleep?' and then she got very angry at me," Verdick told 10News.

The pit bull's owner did not return 10News' phone calls, and the address she gave deputies led to an Indian Resource Center in City Heights. 10News learned the woman is a homeless client who lives out of her car and could be anywhere.

"Now there's a dangerous pit bull living in a car with a homeless female. Is it going to be a child that's attacked next?" said Riddell.

The San Diego Humane Society and SPCA is the agency that handles animal cases in Vista. An official said the group could not comment on what would happen next because the incident was never reported to them.

The sheriff's department said, according the incident report, deputies did contact the Humane Society and were told agents were on the way.

The report also said, the Humane Society told deputies they could leave the scene as long as the pit bull was contained.

However, Riddell said no one from the Humane Society ever showed up.

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