When Angela Marcelino of San Jose, CA opened the front door of her home, she thought she saw something out of the corner of her eye. As she turned, she was pushed into her home and onto the floor. As she screamed, the assailant began to choke her with one hand. As he increased the pressure on his grip, she saw a white streak run in from another room. The only words she managed to utter were, "Maya, get him."
The American Pit Bull Terrier went on the defense, snarling and biting at the unlucky intruder. While trying to fight off the dog, the man loosened his grip enough for Angela to stand up and grab his groin with all of her might. The attacker gave up and ran out of the house. Angela was able to run out and get the man's license plate number. Repeating it over and over in her head, she ran in the house and called 911.
When the police arrived, they noticed blood on Maya's face and wondered if it was possibly from the attacker. It took some time for the officers to gather a blood sample from the face of the still-angry Pit Bull, but after a few tries, they were successful. The blood sample matched the DNA of Anthony Easley, 37, who had previously been convicted of two sexual felonies and a robbery. Since this was his third strike, if convicted, he faces life in prison.
Angela adopted Maya as a puppy from the Humane Society and she had always been a gentle pet; however, she knew when her owner needed her the most. After the attack, Maya became a local hero. She has also been named the 2008 National Dog Day Hero Dog by the Animal Miracle Foundation.
"I was very excited to show the world the good side of Pit Bulls," says Colleen Paige, Animal Behaviorist, author and founder of National Dog Day. "She's what we're calling our "AmbassaBULL" to all bull breeds."