Assistant Fire Chief Saves Disabled Neighbor from Dog Attack

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ISLETON-

The screams from a house on 3rd Street in Isleton were enough to get anyone’s attention but it really hit home for Cosumnes Fire District Assistant Chief George Apple, who lives across the street.

“I could hear the victim screaming for help, that the dogs were killing him,” said Apple

As the fire marshal for the Elk Grove District, he’s a sworn officer who carries a gun.

“I knew what kind of dogs were there so I grabbed my firearm,” Apple said.

Those dogs were two pit bulls who were attacking a 44-year-old developmentally disabled man who lived in the house owned by her aunt.   The victim’s mother, who is bed ridden with Alzheimers, was apparently the only other person in the house.  After entering the house, Apple knew it was a life or death situation.

“The larger dog had his left arm in his mouth and was pretty much tearing away at it, the smaller dog was biting at his leg,” Apple said.

Apple shot the dog twice, but then it became self-defense.

“There was a lot of fight in that dog and after a couple of shots it was still coming after me,” Apple said.

He shot the second dog when it, too, charged him.

One dog was killed, the other had severe injuries and was later euthanized by Sacramento County Animal Control.  Neighbors had a bad feeling about the seven or more dogs who apparently stayed at the house off and on.

“They’ll go crazy and chase another dog or other people,” a neighbor, who didn’t want to give her name, told FOX40.

She says she’s complained to the homeowner about the dogs who were noisy and fought among themselves, and added that their owner has told her repeatedly that they would be getting rid off the dogs.

As for Apple, he says he didn’t have much time to think…it is, after all, what he’s trained to do even if it’s a different circumstance.

“His life was at stake, so I acted to save his life,” said Apple.

The bite victim is recovering from wounds at North Bay Hospital in Fairfield.  Investigators at Sacramento County Animal Control say they are still investigating the case.  The owner of the house said she was taking care of pit bulls for someone else, and they want to know who that someone else is, an if there are more dogs remaining at the house.

Animal control says no charges will be filed against anyone since the bites happened at the house where the dogs resided.

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