Dog owner: Attack on NYCHA worker was an accident

The owner of a pit bull that attacked two New York City Housing Authority workers is sharing her side of the story, and she says

Samantha Rodriguez's pit bulls have been removed from her home at the Morris Houses in the Bronx.

Samantha Rodriguez's pit bulls have been removed from her home at the Morris Houses in the Bronx. (5/1/16)

THE BRONX - The owner of a pit bull that attacked two New York City Housing Authority workers is sharing her side of the story, and she says the incident was a terrible accident.

Samantha Rodriguez says she awoke Thursday morning to the sounds of a man screaming. She ran to the hallway and saw her 10-year-old daughter standing in the open doorway.

"Then I saw a man on the floor and my dog on his pants, so I ran to try and take him off," Rodriguez said. "He did what he thought he was supposed to do in the moment, he was defending my daughter."

Alphonsus Ojevwe, the worker who was attacked, says he and his partner knocked on Rodriguez's door to collect unpaid rent. But Rodriguez claims they had already spoken about the issue by phone and she had agreed to pay by May 1. She also says she would have planned for his visit if she had been given advanced notice.

"I don't appreciate the way that they make it seem like I'm this careless dog owner," Rodriguez said.

Pit bulls are banned at the Morris Houses and every NYCHA complex, but Rodriguez says many tenants have them for self-defense.

NYCHA says it has removed the dogs from the premises. Rodriguez says they are being held by Animal Care and Control of NYC for 10 days, but after that, their fate is unclear.

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