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Hero Honored For Saving 11-Year-Old Girl In Yonkers Dog Attack

Jose Jimenez, of Yonkers
Jose Jimenez, of Yonkers Photo Credit: Yonkers City Goverment

A man who saved an 11-year-old girl from a savage dog attack in June was honored Wednesday by Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano with the Good Samaritan Award.

Jose Jimenez of Yonkers saved 11-year-old Jaelyn Rodriguez who was being attacked by two 120-pound Bullmastiffs as she walked to her school bus stop.

Jimenez, who was driving home from his job at Domino Sugar, came upon the attack June 22, in the area of Ashburton Avenue at Yonkers Avenue, said Spano.

He added that while everyone else seemed to be frozen, Jimenez was "the real hero" and jumped in despite the possibility of being seriously injured and "saved Jaelyn's life."

Police Commissioner Charles Gardner said the girl was trying to fight off the two Bullmastiffs when Jimenez came upon the scene.

When he saw what was happening, Jimenez jumped from his car, took a garbage can lid and any other objects he could find in the roadway and beat the dogs until he was able to get her to his car. He then drove her to the hospital where she received treatment and stitches for her wounds.

The girl's mother, Teresa Rolon, said that her daughter was bitten from her head to her toes and was now afraid of dogs.

During Wednesday's ceremony, she told Jimenez: "You're a hero, end of story, and you're my daughter's guardian angel."

Members of the Emergency Units attempted to control the dogs with health sticks and darts to no avail; for the safety of everyone present, the animals were then euthanized, police said.

The dog's 49-year-old owner, Antonio Santana of Yonkers, was arrested a day after the attack on charges of reckless endangerment. Police said the dogs escaped from a deficiently fenced-in yard on Prescott Avenue just before the attack.

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