Officer suffers bites to face, hand trying to save woman from dog attack

Published: Oct. 29, 2015 at 9:11 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 30, 2015 at 8:51 PM EDT
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DAVIDSON, NC (WBTV) - A Davidson police officer has been taken to the hospital after he tried to help a woman being attacked by a dog Thursday afternoon.

According to investigators, the officer suffered dog bite wounds to the hand and face.

Police tell WBTV two women were walking their dogs on Caldwell Lane when the animals began to fight. Police say one dog started attacking one of the women

Sgt. Steve Ingram says one of his officers, late identified as Corporal David Houk, just happened to be driving through the St. Alban's neighborhood.

"There was no call for service. The officer was just riding by when he saw this incident unfolding. So instinctively, he got out of the car to try and provide aid," Ingram said.

Ingram says at that point the dog turned on him and the officer was forced to shoot the the animal. Davidson police say he was bitten by the dog several times in the face and hand.

"He did everything to try not to shoot the animal and he was left with no other choice at that point," Ingram said.

In a release from Davidson police, they state that Houk was following policy when he made the decision to shoot the dog. They say he fired once, striking the dog. The dog reportedly died immediately.

Jessie Brewer lives in the neighborhood.

"We walk our dogs here every day. It's a friendly neighborhood. Dogs are friendly to each other, so it's kind of surprising to hear," Brewer said.

Kim Owens is the co-owner of NoDa Bark and Board in Charlotte.

"It's crazy that the dog had to be shot. It was probably an avoidable situation," Owens said.

Owens says there are things to do if pet owners find themselves in situations like this.

"You do whatever you can to break it up. Except, try not to stick your fingers or your face obviously in the middle," Owens said.

Owens advises grabbing the dog's haunches to pull them out of the incident. But if you have an aggressive dog, she says never give them the opportunity to fight.

"Take yourself away from that situation. Especially if you may have a stroller and have kids with you, cross the street," Owens said.

Police say the officer was wearing a body camera. WBTV has requested the video.

Corporal Houk and the woman were treated at a local hospital and released Thursday night. They are both expected to recover from their wounds.

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