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article imageVideo: Man saves teens from vicious dogs in Washington DC

By Leigh Goessl     Apr 22, 2012 in World
Washington - Earlier this weekend two dogs attempted to attack about a dozen teenagers in a Northeast D.C. neighborhood. One man distracted the dogs to help the teens get away, and the dogs turned on him, leaving him injured.
Surveillance video taken from a nearby apartment in the Trinidad neighborhood was shared by media reports. The footage shows two large dogs chasing the teens around 9 p.m. Friday night, even as the children jumped on the cars in an attempt to escape, the dogs followed.
One man, on his way home from work at the Nationals Stadium, took action. Andrew Wilkis had just come home after Friday night's baseball game and intervened. He was described by ABC Local affiliate WJLA News as "armed with a knife and his courage."
In the midst of the attack many of the teens had gotten away, but two were stranded on top of cars. The dogs were attempting to reach the teens, with one dog succeeding on climbing onto the car. The dogs are described as being "giant".
“It was like something out of a horror movie,” Tiara Bryant, mother of one of the children the dogs were chasing, told WJLA.
Wilkis got the dogs attention, and witnesses say he was attacked by the dogs and tossed around "like a rag doll." In the meantime, the remaining children were able to escape.
Reports say the brutal dog attack on Wilkis lasted for 13 minutes.
Wilkis' son and neighbors helped him, and the injured dogs limped away. Bloodied paw-prints could be seen on the sidewalk leading to a specific apartment building on the street. Reports say blood is in the building's lobby on the floor and ceiling.
Wilkis was released from the hospital yesterday with serious bites on his arms and hands; he had received stitches for some of his injuries. Interview footage shows his arms bandaged up.
Wilkis is being hailed as a hero by all.
“I had to sacrifice myself,” Wilkis said. “I don’t think of myself as a hero. This is my community.”
He noted in an interview with NBC News (with his last name noted as Hawthorne), he said he has no regrets getting in the middle of the dog attack and would do it again. NBC reports he has an appointment tomorrow to see if any nerve damage has occurred as a result of his injuries.
Residents are now afraid, not knowing when or if the dogs will come back and attack.
“These dogs were obviously trained to be cruel to be mean to be vicious,” one unidentified neighbor and eyewitness told WJLA, “I mean its bloodshed.”
Several people are commenting on ABC News' Facebook page praising Andrew as a hero and expressing sentiments that these two dogs were trained to be vicious.
At time of report, no one knows which apartment the dogs went into, or even if the dogs are still alive. No neighbor has come forward to admit ownership or responsibility for the vicious dogs.
Animal Control and Police are currently investigating the incident and still seeking the owner, reported NBC.
Update Apr. 24: Reportedly, authorities now know who owns the dogs and where they reside, however, the dogs were not in custody as of earlier today. WUSA reported (courtesy WTSP) residents are upset and feel not enough is being done. MyFox DC reported yesterday the D.C. Department of Health said the agency has ordered the dogs be impounded, and animal control officers will be on patrol in the neighborhood until the dogs are caught.
WUSA reported one resident said, "The dogs should be euthanized and the owner should be arrested. When he saw what was happening, he just went inside and shut the door. The only reason he came back out is because the dogs were coming back down the street and he wanted to let them back in."
Hawthorne is being treated for potential rabies exposure.
More about Washington dc, Dogs, Dog attack, Andrew Wilkis, andre hawthorne
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