The life of a 2-year-old pit bull hangs in the balance after it attacked a little boy Thursday afternoon in a backyard.
Seven-year-old Malik Albright has 20 stitches on his ear, cheek and leg from the attack. His parents plan on pressing charges against the owner on Monday over the incident.
The pit bull’s name is DK. The dog is being quarantined by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department Animal Care and Control, which could decide to euthanize the animal next week.
Albright said DK bit him on the face Thursday afternoon during a neighborhood game of cops and robbers.
Albright said he was angry "because he was hurting me."
Albright said several kids were in his neighbor's backyard playing, when his friend opened the door to let the dog out. As part of the game, his friend told the dog to attack.
"I guess just kids being kids, as part of the game. Maybe just pretending he's a police dog," said Albright's mother, Annette.
"I think he bite me (on the cheek) first," Albright said, which he described the bite as a little pinch.
Albright said his older brother punched and kick the dog to get it off.
"I have no doubt that my son would have died," Annette Albright said.
But the dog's owner isn't quite so sure it happened the way the 7-year-old said it did.
Ricardo Howzer said Albright was playing with his son, but said Albright climbed the backyard fence as part of the game, which excited the dog.
"He's an 80-, 85-pound dog. So I guess he could have jumped up on him, probably got him a good scratch. And if he jumped on him, the kid's going to fall. And that's when he probably scratched him again," Howzer said. "But he by no means bit that child."
No adults saw what happened; only young children were in the backyard at the time.
Albright's family says they will file a criminal complaint on Monday with police, and they want to see DK euthanized.
Howzer said he will fight to make sure that does not happen. He's supposed to hear from Animal Control early next week about a hearing date.