A Fall River man is facing charges after police say he stabbed a dog Saturday night.

Lt. Ronald Furtado says officers were sent to South Main St. and King Phillip St. around 7:30 p.m. over reports of a dog being stabbed.

Upon arrival they observed several people arguing and saw a dog, identified as an American Pit Bull Terrier named Smokey, lying on the ground bleeding from stab wounds in his torso.

The dog's owner says she was walking him on a leash when a smaller, unleashed, white dog approached and began attacking her dog.

She says the white dog's owner, identified as 45-year-old William Whitson, then started yelling for assistance from other males in the area.

The woman says she began seperating the dogs Whitson ran up and began stabbing her dog with a knife.

She says she ran from the scene in fear but identified Whitson who was still in the area.

Whitson then told officers that as he was seperating the dogs, the Pit-Bull bit his hand and wouldn't let go, and he stabbed it in an attempt to break the dog's grip.

He was then taken to St. Anne's Hospital for a small laceration between his index finger and thumb.

Furtado says officers continued to investigate and spoke to witnesses who confirmed the woman's account and arrested Whitson and charged him with Cruelty To An Animal, Distrubing The Peace While Armed, and Assault With A Dangerous Weapon.

Smokey, the pit bull, was taken to Mass-RI Veterinary ER in Swansea where he was listed in critical condition.

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