Fort Collins - A family's pit bull saved a 9-year-old from being abducted from his backyard, and police searched Tuesday for the suspect.
"Destiny" came to the aid of the boy Monday night as a stranger allegedly was pulling him over the fence. The dog charged the assailant, who let go of the child and fled, according to the family.
"I got her to protect my kids," Wayne Myers, the boy's father, said of his 2-year-old dog. "I love pit bulls to death."
Myers said he became aware that something was wrong while working on a car in his driveway in the 3000 block of West Laporte Avenue about 7:20 p.m.
"Destiny started barking, and it wasn't playful," Myers said.
Myers said he ran through his house and into the backyard and saw a man he described as about 6 feet tall, in his mid-30s, weighing about 160 pounds, balding with brown hair and a mustache and wearing a blue T-shirt and jean shorts, walking away through a neighbor's yard.
Myers instructed his sons to go inside while he told a roommate to call the police.
But while the boy was picking up toys, the man returned and attempted to pull the boy over the fence while covering his mouth, Myers said. Destiny's response saved the boy from further harm, the family believes.
"That's what I got her for," Myers said. "That's what I trained her to do."
Larimer County deputies and investigators responded to the incident and swept the area with a canine team but were unable to find the man.
"We have gotten a composite sketch, are going door to door with it and are checking all of the registered sex offenders in the area," said Eloise Campanella, public information officer for the Larimer County Sheriff's Office. Campanella also said sheriff's deputies have increased their patrols of the area.
"In Larimer County, this is certainly an odd event," Campanella said.
The boy, whom the family has asked not be identified, was in relatively good shape Tuesday after a night without sleep, according to Myers.
"He is an extremely tough kid," Myers said. "He takes this stuff better than I do."