An off-duty Boston police officer was in the city’s Dorchester neighborhood around 12:10 p.m. when he heard screams, the Boston Police Department told Fox News. He found the child being attacked in a backyard by a pit bull, Police Commissioner William Gross told reporters.
The officer opened fire using his service weapon to stop the attack, police said. It was not clear if the dog was hit.
The boy was taken to a hospital with non-life threatening injuries and two dogs were taken by animal control officers. Gross said the child sustained injuries to his arm, neck and groin.
“Thank God the officer was there to intervene because if he didn’t the dog was going to continue to attack,” Gross said.
He said another pit bull was being restrained “that I’m confident would have joined in the attack as well,” he added.
The officer was taken to a hospital for observation. The shooting is being investigated.
Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins praised the officer for his actions.
“There’s an 11-year-old child we are hopeful will make it, but has been harmed significantly. But for the bravery of this officer, we might be having a very different press conference right now,” she said.