San Jose Animal Control Service Questioned After Pit Bull Attack

An after Thanksgiving dinner walk with her dog turned into a life or death situation for Angela Morrow.

"I didn't realize how in danger I was until it was over," she said.

Morrow is referring to her and her dog being attacked by a pit bull mix.

"I was punching, kicking, doing anything I could to get him off of my dog," she said.

Morrow said her dog, Gus, was being attacked by her neighbor's pit bull-mix.

"The dog's owner and another neighbor pulled the pit bull off of him, then it lunged at me," Morrow said.

Morrow suffered a bruise to her face and cuts on her hand.

The Thanksgiving night incident was the second time Gus was attacked by the neighbor's dog, according to Morrow. The same dog attacked Gus in March while Morrow's daughter was selling Girl Scout cookies.

"I'm fearful for any child, animal, anyone that comes in contact with this owner and his dog," Morrow said.

San Jose Animal control said in June the pit bull's owner, Kevin Vargas, was ordered by court to muzzle the dog in public.

"The bottom line is the dog was off leash and not under control," Circirelli said. "If he had been under control none of this happens."

San Jose Animal Services Director Jon Circirelli said Vargas has a criminal history so as a safety precaution, two animal control officers were needed to respond to the call. There were only two animal control officers on duty Friday, when the incident was reported.

"By the time the other officers were freed up, it was already dark," Circirelli said. "So they thought it was even more dangerous."

Circirelli adds that since the pit bull was contained by his owner after the attack, the situations was no longer prioritized as an emergency.

When officers arrived on Saturday morning, it appeared Vargas and the dog had left town, which is what officers were told after the first attack.

"I felt really let down by my city," Morrow said.

Morrow said she will not feel safe walking on her own street until the pit bull is in custody.

"You hear cats have nine lives," she said. "I don't know, maybe dogs do too."

San Jose Animal Control is asking the public's help in finding Vargas, who reportedly drives a 2000 white Chrysler Voyager. His dog, Pewee, is a brown brindle, pit bull boxer mix.

Contact Us