Man mauled by dogs that broke through fence in alley shares story

William Parson

DENVER, Colo. --  A local man is speaking out from his hospital bed after being attacked by a pair of dogs.

Denver Animal Services has since seized the dogs, a bulldog and presa canario, from the owner. But as the victim deals with complications from his injuries, the FOX31 Problem Solvers have uncovered this is not the first time animal control has been to the house.

“They were coming for blood,” William Parson said.

With a gaping leg wound, and tethered to a hospital bed, Parson recounts the terrifying moments when he came face-to-face with two ferocious dogs.

“I was picking up some wood, holding it up and I heard the fence go boooom!” Parson said.

On Friday, May 4, Parson was collecting wood for an upcoming barbecue for his company in the alley between Quebec and Poplar, when the dogs broke out of the fence.

“Another dog came and hit me on this side, so I started fighting it as the other dog was chewing on my leg,” Parson said.

Thrashing his legs and trying to fight the dogs off, Parson ran to his car.

“It basically put me in shock. I started shaking real bad. The only thing I could think is trying to get to the hospital.”

Parson, dealing with permanent nerve damage and six bite injuries, now wants the owner held accountable. The Problem Solvers stopped by the dog owner’s home.

FOX31: “Why wasn’t that fence more secure back there?”

Thomas Hickmen: “It was secure. When they seen the guy they rushed through there.”

FOX31: “Then it wasn’t secure.”

Hickmen: “I feel protected with the dogs here so basically, in my opinion the dogs were doing what they’re supposed to.”

FOX 31: “What if it was a little kid in that alley?”

Hickmen: “If it was a little kid in there the dogs would not mess with the kid.”

FOX 31: “You don’t know that though – they were able to bust out of the fence.”

The Problem Solvers obtained new information from animal services. Officers have responded to this home twice in the past when the dogs bit someone else.

FOX 31: “With you being the owner – you know you have the responsibility?

Hickmen: “I have a lot of responsibility. And I do feel bad.”

Parson was choking back tears in his hospital room as he thinks about his mounting medical expenses, but remarkably he said he doesn’t harbor anger toward the owner.

“He’s already in enough trouble, but I just don’t want this to happen to somebody else. But you need to have them in a some kind of secure area, because if your dog gets out you’re liable,” Parson said.

Animal services has issued a citation to the owner.

He is now facing a penalty of possible jail time or a fine up to $1,000.

Animal services said it is possible the dogs could be returned to the owner or put down, ultimately that will be up to a judge. The dogs were not up to date on their rabies vaccines.

Parson's family has started a go fund me page to help with medical expenses: https://www.gofundme.com/e4nm3t-healing-and-wellness-fund