Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Lee County men cited in bestiality cases

FLORIDA -- Lee County Domestic Animal Services reports two men have been cited in separate bestiality cases involving dogs.

Dennis Griffin, of North Fort Myers, was cited for an incident that occurred in October 2012, according to a Lee County Domestic Animal Services release.

Thomas Linville, a transient, was charged under Florida statute for an incident that occurred July 20.

According to the citations, the cases involved a pit bull and a boxer-pit bull mix. Both cases involved witnesses who reported the incidents to authorities, according to the release.

The Lee County Sheriff’s Office used a search warrant to remove Griffin’s dog from his home.

Animal Services took custody of the animal. Linville chose to voluntarily surrender his dog to Animal Services.

Lee County ordinance and Florida statute prohibit bestiality, and Animal Services considers crimes of this nature to be particularly cruel and disturbing, according to the release.

On Wednesday, Griffin denied the allegations in a telephone interview.

"I've never been cruel to animals," he said.

Griffin explained that he believes a neighbor contacted Animal Services and that his dog was taken when he was not home. Griffin took in the dog when its previous owner could no longer care for it.

"It's all (BS)," he said of the charges. Linville chose to surrender his dog to authorities, Brown reported. He could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

Linville's violation carries a maximum penalty of one year in jail and a $1,000 fine upon convicted. Griffin faces a maximum penalty of a $500 fine.

Anyone with information regarding animal abuse is asked to call Animal Services at 239-533-7387. To be eligible to receive a reward for information leading to the arrest of the person(s) responsible, contact Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS.

(News Press - July 31, 2013)

Bull Mastiff attacks three at humane society

CANADA -- A two-year-old Bull Mastiff sent three volunteers at the Upper Credit Humane Society to hospital for treatment earlier this week.

On Tuesday (July 30), Wellington OPP responded to a dog bite complaint at the Upper Credit Humane Society in Erin at about 4:30 p.m.

The dog was in a fenced area of the humane society when the three victims were injured. The trio of volunteers was transported by ambulance to Guelph General Hospital, where they were treated for their injuries.

“They were all dog bites,” said Wellington OPP Const. Gary Barnhardt. “They were treated and they received stitches.”

To the best of Barnhardt’s knowledge, the dog wasn’t rabid. He believes the dog had been at the animal shelter for a couple weeks.

The police investigation into the incident is complete. The Upper Credit Humane Society continues to investigate

(Orangeville Banner - July 31, 2013)

Pleasant Prairie horse farm defendants reject charges

WISCONSIN -- The couple accused of causing the deaths of five horses by starvation has asked that the felony charges against them be reduced and dismissed.

David White and Paula Moctezuma White were each charged with five felony counts of animal mistreatment causing death, for five horses prosecutors say starved to death on their Pleasant Prairie farm.

Those carcasses, as well as dozens of other animals in poor condition, were moved from their farm in April. Homes have been found for most of the animals.

The defendants’ attorneys have challenged the felony counts against them, asking the court to reduce one felony and to dismiss the four other counts. In the motion, attorneys for both defendants assert the first felony should be a misdemeanor, based on the evidence.

“In order to support a felony charge, the state would have to allege not only death of an animal, but also that the defendant affirmatively acted with the intent to cause death, rather than causing death by omission,” the motion states.

The next four counts should be dismissed, the motion argues, because the criminal complaint only refers to a necropsy of one horse showing death by starvation, and there is nothing else definitive to support the other charges. The defense also claims prosecutors knew there could be problems with the evidence presented in the complaint as it relates to those four charges, and so waited until after the couple waived their preliminary hearings to add them.

“Had counts two through five been included in the complaint, they would have been dismissed for lack of probable cause,” the motion states. “The state cannot be permitted an end-run around the probable cause requirement by excluding these chargs from the complaint and then adding the charges in the post-waiver information.”

Prosecutors disagreeThe state says the felony charge is appropriate and it is not necessary that someone intended to kill an animal while mistreating it for a felony to be the applicable charge.

“When one fails to care for or feed an animal, one has the intent to treat the animal in a cruel manner,” the state’s response reads. “The defendants made the conscious choice to not feed the animals day after day.”

The state also says the four additional counts were properly added, and there is enough evidence presented to support them. Additionally, the state says the defendants had notice the charges were coming before they waived their preliminary hearings.

A hearing on the motions is expected Sept. 6.

More charges remain possibleIn court Wednesday, Assistant District Attorney Jennifer Phan said the Whites could still be charged for offenses related to the animals that were still alive when investigators went onto the property to investigate allegations of animal mistreatment. They are waiting for referrals, Phan said.

Many of the animals have been adopted, and are living in new homes.

Rescued and going to new homes

The Whites relinquished ownership of the animals following a civil action filed against them by Pleasant Prairie. The village has a second open civil suit against the couple over conditions of their property.

(Kenosha News - July 31, 2013)


Auberry Residents Worried Horses Are Being Starved

CALIFORNIA -- Several people in Auberry are worried that nearly two dozen horses are being starved to death by their owner.

The horses, 23 in all, are on a barren ranch off of Auberry Road. There is no hay in sight. The horses, instead, eat on dirt. Some of the horses are so skinny that their ribs stick out and their hip bones protrude.

Residents, like Tara Imbrie, say they are concerned that the animals are being neglected.

"They're past the point of starvation,"  said Imbrie, who first saw the horses in June. "Most of them have babies by their side, they are not producing milk, and the babies are very thin. The horses are wormy."

Imbrie said she and a group of other concerned people notified the California Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals as well as Liberty Animal Control.

"They had said that they are getting an average of 20 calls a day on these horses and that they are monitoring the situation," Imbrie said.

[In the video clip, they say the horses aren't in bad enough shape to seize so they're 'monitoring' them. They don't need to wait until they start dying. The authorities should take a vet with them and examine all the horses. Put the owner on a plan of improvement and a deadline to see improvement in the health of the animals. If she doesn't comply, you seize them.]

Imbrie and others sneak apples and carrots as they wait for officials to take action. She even called the Fresno County Sheriff's Office. When deputies arrived, Imbrie said, they just spoke to the owner of the horses.

KMPH attempted to contact the owner of the horses as well as the SPCA, but neither could be reached for comment.

With the days getting hotter and nothing being done, Imbrie doesn't think the horses will survive much longer.

[In the video clip, the reporter says neighbors have confronted the owner who tells them she's raised horses all her life, she knows what she's doing, they belong to her and she can do with them what she wants.]

(KMPH - Jul 30, 2013)

Deputy Shoots, Kills Aggressive Pit Bulls

FLORIDA -- The Escambia County Sheriff's Office said before they were put down by a deputy, two pit bulls went on a rampage in a local neighborhood.  During the incident, a resident potentially saved the life of an elderly man and his dog while the two were being attacked the morning of Tuesday, July 30.


Martin Haygood walks his 2-year-old treasure, Toodles, Tuesday afternoon. You’d never know anything happened to this duo by looking at them, but that morning they were attacked by two pit bulls.

He only wants to go by David, but a neighbor says he had an earlier run-in with the same dogs at his home.

Concerned, he left with his shotgun, only to find Martin and Toodles in trouble, the pit bulls between them and their house.

“I said, ‘I don’t know if you can make it home.’ Well, he got about halfway across the road and that’s when they jumped him," David said.  "That’s when I went back to my truck and retrieved my gun and I shot in the air sort of over that way.”

Haygood said the shots stunned the dogs, and he took full advantage.

"I hot-footed it across the lawns to my house, opened up the door and went in and stayed in," Haygood said.

Deputies said the dogs went on to attack a number of people in the area this morning, sending some road workers home with minor injuries.

Deputies responded to the scene and say they were forced to shoot and kill the pit bulls.

“When the [deputy] got out of his car, luckily he had taken his gun," said resident Cathy Anderson, who says her husband was also attacked.  "The dogs turned and just charged [the deputy], so it was just like they were just on a mission to attack.”

FOX10 News asked Haygood if he thinks David saved his life.

 "If they were as strong as they could be, and if they had a history of it, definitely," Haygood said.  "Absolutely, no doubt about it.”

David said he just reacted the way anyone would.

“I was just worried about the man, and I know how many elderly people we have in this sub-division, and I just came out here in concern, that’s all it was," David said.

Escambia County Animal Control is investigating the incident.  Officials said they don’t know owns the dogs.

Those injured road workers were treated and released from the hospital Tuesday.

(fox10 - July 30, 2013)

Woman Required Facial Reconstruction After Dog Attack

TENNESSEE -- Betty Mathews, 66, said when a neighbor's dog attacked her it did not just change her face, it changed her entire outlook on animals.

"I ain't never seen a dog do like that before. I been around dogs my whole life," Mathews said.

Saturday, Mathews said her dog was tied to a tree when a neighbors pit bull dog came and attacked him. Mathews said she did not want to break up the fight but needed to protect her dog.

"I got a bucket of water, threw it in their face and when I did that the little black dog made a dive for me and got me here and here," she said motioning to her right cheek and midsection.

The attack terrified Mathews so much, Parsons Police said she has been calling the police station.

"She's nervous, she's scared. (Another) little dog walked through her yard, it wasn't a pit bull or aggressive. It just cut through her yard. It scared her and she called 9-1-1 so I went out there," Investigator Joe Vaughn said.

Mathews was taken by ambulance to Decatur County General Hospital but her injuries were so severe she was later transferred to Vanderbilt. While hospitalized, she received cosmetic reconstructive surgery and more than 300 stitches.

Investigator Vaughn was the responding officer and said when he arrived on the scene, a hole in the side of Mathews cheek was exposing her teeth.

"They had to sew it back together and there were pieces missing," he said.


Jeremy Warn owns the dog involved in the attack. His family said their dog, Cole is a loving member of their family and has been for 14 years. They said their dog was tied up Saturday but broke free. They are being charged with allowing a vicious animal to run at large.

Investigator Vaughn suggested calling the police not taking matters into your own hands when dealing with animals. "We cannot authorize anyone to shoot a dog. But at the same time a property owner has the right to protect their property," he said.

Betty Mathews said her dog was injured following the fight and is staying with family members. She said as long as her neighbor's pit bull dog remains in close proximity she is worried for the safety of her neighborhood.

"I want them to do something about that dog! I am afraid it'll get a kid or someone else," she said.

The case has been turned over to the Decatur County Health Officials because the dog did not have current shot records. The animal is currently under quarantine for 10 days. Following the quarantine, a decision will be made whether to euthanize the dog.

(WBBJ - July 30, 2013)

What they need to do is file a petition with the courts to have the dog forcibly destroyed (TCA 44-17-120).

Class E felony punishment: Not less than one (1) year nor more than six (6) years in prison. In addition, the jury may assess a fine not to exceed three thousand dollars ($3,000), unless otherwise provided by statute

§ 44-8-408 Dogs not allowed at large - A violation of this section is a Class E felony if the dog running at large causes serious bodily injury, as defined by § 39-11-106, to another.

What is "serious bodily injury"? Well, let's take a look:

§ 39-11-106 Criminal offenses - definitions
(a) As used in this title, unless the context requires otherwise:
(2) "Bodily injury" includes a cut, abrasion, bruise, burn or disfigurement, and physical pain or temporary illness or impairment of the function of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty;
(34) "Serious bodily injury" means bodily injury that involves:
(A) A substantial risk of death;
(B) Protracted unconsciousness;
(C) Extreme physical pain;
(D) Protracted or obvious disfigurement;
(E) Protracted loss or substantial impairment of a function of a bodily member, organ or mental faculty; or
(F) A broken bone of a child who is eight (8) years of age or less;

§ 44-17-120 Destruction of dog causing death or serious injury to human
(a) Any dog that attacks a human and causes death or serious bodily injury may be destroyed upon the order of the judge of the circuit court of the county wherein the attack occurred. Such orders shall be granted on the petition of the district attorney general for the county. The petition shall name the owner of the dog, and the owner shall be given notice in accordance with Rule 4.01 of the Tennessee rules of civil procedure, that if the owner does not appear before the court within five (5) days of
the receipt thereof and show cause why the dog should not be destroyed, then the order shall issue and the dog shall be destroyed.

Pit Bull Attacks Children in Maryland

MARYLAND -- Two boys suffered injuries in a pit bull attack in Clinton, Md., Monday, News4’s Pat Collins reported.


The pit bull was off leash when it approached a 13-year-old boy and his 6-year-old cousin as they walked across a football field about 5:15 p.m.

The older boy put his cousin on his shoulder, but the dog kept jumping at the younger boy, so the 13-year-old jumped on the hood then the roof of a car for safety with his cousin still on his shoulder.

Their grandmother chased the dog away with a stick, at which point the 6-year-old ran into a nearby house, but the dog followed him, Collins reported. Neighbors followed and used a blanket and a belt to get the dog out of the house.

The teenage girl who was with the pit bull left the scene with the dog before officers arrived, police said.


The 13-year-old suffered a bite to his lip and scratches on his arm. The younger boy also was injured.

The pit bull was taken by Animal Control for rabies testing. It could be put down, Collins reported.

The dog’s owner, 20-year-old Drew Byron Street, was arrested Tuesday afternoon and charged with a violation of the Prince George’s County law that prohibits possession of pit bulls, which is punishable by a maximum sentence of six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.


(nbcwashington - July 30, 2013)

Mail carrier injured in vicious pit bull attack

CALIFORNIA -- A mail carrier with the U.S. Postal Service suffered serious injuries in a vicious attack by a pit bull in San Diego, authorities said Tuesday.

The carrier was on his regular route on the afternoon of July 19 on A Street near 31st Street in the Golden Hill neighborhood when a pit bull ran out of an unlocked gate and attacked, said Postal Service spokeswoman Eva Jackson.

The dog jumped on the carrier and bit the carrier on the neck, as well as on the shoulder and six times on his legs, Jackson said.

The carrier, a military veteran who has been with the Postal Service for 13½ years, was hospitalized and had to undergo plastic surgery. He also lost several teeth in the attack, Jackson said.

He has not yet been able to return to work, she said.

The carrier, whose name has not been released, has volunteered to tell his story publicly on Thursday to bring attention to the problem of dog attacks, a major issue for postal workers, Jackson said.

In just the first seven months of this year, 31 letter carriers have been attacked by dogs in San Diego, she said. Last year, 32 postal employees were attacked. Dogs attacked 5,879 postal carriers last year across the country.

“And it’s not just pit bulls,” Jackson said. “Any dog can bite.”

The dog involved in the recent attack was relinquished by its owners and euthanized, she said. It was not the first time the animal had bitten someone, she said.

Postal officials said that costs associated with dog bites, including medical expenses, worker’s compensation, and legal and other costs add up to more than $25 million annually.

Pet owners can be held liable for medical expenses and other costs, which can run into the hundreds of thousands of dollars, officials said.

(U-T San Diego - July 30, 2013)

Disabled man in Zephyrhills attacked by dogs and dog owners

FLORIDA -- "I was very very very fearful," Harold Underwood stammered.

It can be hard for Underwood, 42, to express himself.  He says he had a stroke 10 years ago that severely impacted his speech and left his legs completely useless.

He now gets by on an electric wheelchair.

On Monday, as he does most days, he was riding his wheelchair to the bus stop. In his Zephyrhills trailer park, the way to get there is down a dirt road where he passes by 4033 Edwin  Drive. 

According to an incident report by the Pasco Sheriff's Office, they breed pit bulls at that address.  There are currently six pit bulls living there.

"This man was apparently just driving by on the right-of-the-way in his wheelchair and was attacked," said spokesman for the Pasco Sheriff's Office Kevin Doll. "Once we responded, we found out that not only had the dogs possibly attacked him, but the owners of the dogs had as well."

According to Underwood, multiple pit bulls got loose on Monday and charged at him aggressively. He says he fought back with his cane. That's when, according to the incident report, the two dog owners, Dannie Rayford Jr. and Brandi Page, got involved.

Deputies say Rayford yelled at Underwood to "get off my property." They say he then grabbed the front of Underwood's wheelchair and tried to dump him onto the ground. Rayford's girlfriend, Page, noticed Underwood was trying to call 911. According to deputies, she grabbed Underwood's arm, trying to stop him.

Underwood still has a sizeable scratch on his shoulder.

"I'm a sitting target in my chair," he said. "There's no way I can defend myself when I'm sitting in that chair."

Both Rayford and Page were arrested for abusing a disabled adult. They have each since been released on a $5,000 bond.

Rayford told ABC Action News Tuesday evening that neither of them ever touched Underwood.  He said the scratch on Underwood's shoulder probably came from his own cane.

Multiple neighbors said they've had to call Animal Control because of the pit bulls on that property.  Animal Control said they would not be able to confirm if that was true until Wednesday

( - July 30, 2013)

Palm Bay woman in hospital after dog attack

FLORIDA -- A Brevard County woman is recovering after being attacked by three dogs.

A neighbor saw Marche McCubbin, 53, walking down Hainlin Street in Palm Bay, when the dogs started circling her and then attacking her.

Daniel Madden said it was barking that let him know something was wrong down the street from his home.

"I noticed my neighbor lady trying to get into her driveway with three pit bulls surrounding her," said Madden.

He said a short time later he saw the dogs lunge at her and grab onto her neck arms, and legs.

"The big one came up behind her and grabbed onto her, pulled her down to the ground and the other two jumped right on her and started mauling her," said Madden.

Madden said he pulled her from the dogs' grips and grabbed a shovel to keep them at bay.

The back of her neck was mauled up pretty good. Her arm, it almost looked like it was broken. It was bleeding profusely. She has a big old pool of blood on her front porch,” Madden said.

Madden said he called police, and eventually animal control officers came out to seize the dogs.

The dogs' owner wasn't happy that the dogs were taken away.   

"What you doing taking my dogs?" the owner asked as that dogs were removed.

Madden said the dogs have been a problem and he is glad to see them go.
"I have numerous calls into animal control because of all the kids on the street, and I told them a pack of dogs running like that, it's inevitable," said Madden.

Police said the victim, who hasn't been identified, was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

(WFTV - July 30, 2013)

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Man walking 2 dogs stabs attacking dog after it latches onto dog's neck

FLORIDA -- A man walking his two dogs in north St. Petersburg was forced to stab an attacking dog after it allegedly attacked.

According to Pinellas County Sheriff's spokesperson Cristen Rensel, the man was walking his two Dobermans in the area of Lincoln Way and Haines Road around 7 p.m. Sunday when a pit bull appeared and attacked his dogs.

The pit bull reportedly latched onto the throat of one of the Dobermans. The man pulled out a pocket knife and stabbed the pit bull.

The man and his dogs did not sustain significant injuries. The pit bull is expected to survive.

Deputies are interviewing the pit bull's owner. It has not been decided if the pit bull's owner will face charges, as the investigation continues.

(ABC Action News-Jul 28, 2013)

Staffie put down after girl, 5, bitten

UNITED KINGDOM -- A DOG that attacked a five-year-old girl as she played in a garden, leaving her scarred for life, has been put down.

Paige Barenskie underwent surgery to repair damage to her nose and cheek after the Staffordshire bull terrier-cross attacked her in 38th Avenue, north Hull, last Wednesday.

Mark "Harry" Falkingham, 34, who owned the dog, named Buster, for 18 months, says he took him to pet charity, the PDSA, where the animal was destroyed.

He said: "I feel really sorry for Paige. It should not have happened.

"I had no choice but to put Buster down. He had never bitten anyone before, but once they bite someone, you can never trust them again – you have to put them down. Any responsible dog-owner would have done the same in my position."

Paige's mum, Gemma Barenskie, was present when the dog attacked as her daughter played with other children in her neighbour's front garden.

Mr Falkingham, who lives two doors away from Mrs Barenskie, said the dog had crawled through a gap in a fence and into next-door's garden, where it lunged at Paige.

Paige's three-year-old brother, Hayden, was among several people who witnessed the attack.

Mr Falkingham shed more light on the three-year-old dog's past.

He said: "I got Buster from a friend who moved out of the area. He read about the attack in the Mail and was pretty upset. Buster had grown up around kids. He has a kid about Paige's age. He has an older one as well. Buster never attacked either of them.

"We have no idea why he attacked Paige, but she did not do anything wrong."

Her aunt, Kira Adamson, said although scarred, she is making a good recovery at home after spending a night at Hull Royal Infirmary.

She said: "Paige is getting back to her normal self. She is in a bit of pain – her cheek hurts the most – but she's getting better."

Miss Adamson said the family is satisfied with the way the dog's owner has dealt with the situation.

She said: "I knew Buster since Harry got him. "He was a lovely dog, but Harry has done the responsible thing and had it put down after what happened."

Miss Adamson said her niece was sent home from hospital with antibiotics and cream to apply to her wounds.

She said: "Paige has to go back to see her consultant in six weeks' time. We will know more then. It's possible she will have plastic surgery."

A Humberside Police spokesman said officers were not intending to take any action against the owner.

(This is Hull and East Riding - July 29, 2013)

Kelpie attack injures child

AUSTRALIA -- A Champion Kelpie should be destroyed after it allegedly attacked a six-year-old girl, according to her father.

Mack - a lauded working dog that has won numerous events at the Casterton Kelpie Festival - is believed to have left the schoolgirl with severe facial wounds requiring hundreds of stitches, micro and plastic surgery and the need for ongoing dental work.

Victoria Police confirmed the incident happened on June 22 on private property at Balliang East, near Bacchus Marsh.

Moorabool Shire Council is tasked with investigating the incident because it occurred on a private residence.

It is believed no one witnessed the attack.

The girl's father, Trevor, said he did not hold the owners responsible for the attack, but believed the dog should be destroyed to prevent future similar incidents.

He said the girl had grown up around the dog.

"We don't know what made the dog switch, but something like this should not be able to happen again," he said.

Council chief executive Rob Croxford said rangers were investigating the incident and "liaising with all parties involved, including seeking legal advice".

(Weekly Times Now - July 30, 2013)

Court to rule on dog's fate

GEORGIA -- A judge will rule in 10 days whether a pit bull that attacked an Effingham County child last year will be put down or will be sent to an out-of-state animal refuge.

In a hearing Tuesday afternoon, Melissa Frye, the mother of Wesley Frye, said the pit bull known as “Kno” attacked her then-5-year-old son with the intention of killing him.

“He was out to kill Wesley,” she said.

Frye’s two sons had spent the night at a neighbor’s house, and when Wesley went to get cereal, the dog attacked, Melissa Frye said. Eventually, the dog attacked three times, twice pulling away from the grasp of its owner, Julie Long, to do so.

“The dog had an agenda,” Melissa Frye said.

Wesley Frye, now 6, was airlifted to Memorial University Medical Center in Savannah and underwent two separate surgeries. Melissa Frye said her son continues to undergo speech therapy and will have permanent damage from the attack.

The Fryes have asked for the dog to be put down. Since the attack last July, the dog has been housed at the Effingham County animal shelter.

Mickey Kicklighter, the court-appointed attorney for the dog, said he has arranged for the dog to be taken to Glen Wild Animal Refuge in New York, where the owner, Linda Keller, has agreed to submit to the court’s jurisdiction. Should the dog be sent there, it will not be adopted out and would not be allowed near children.

Judge William Woodrum said he will render his decision in 10 days and also said he may to go the shelter to see the dog.

(Effingham Herald - July 30, 2013)

Dog attack sends two to hospital

CONNECTICUT -- A Forest Drive homeowner and her six-year-old son were taken to Danbury Hospital after being bitten by their dog around 9:45 this morning.

The 42-year-old woman and her child were treated for “non-life threatening, upper extremity injuries” at the scene, Fire Chief Heather Burford confirmed.

Police and EMS responders arrived at the scene along with dog warden David Coles. Officer Coles took the animal to the dog pound, where he quarantined it.

Police said there is an investigation into whether or not it should be put down.

Chief Burford added the victim’s suffered injuries to their arms and hands.

She said that the crew of responders described the dog as a pit bull, but could not confirm the dog’s breed or what may have provoked the attack.

On April 8, a West Lane resident in his late 20s sustained serious injuries to his face when his pit bull attacked him.

The victim had to undergo “multiple surgeries,” Chief Burford said.

The dog had been owned for more than a year.

An investigation concluded that the pit bull had not been provoked before the attack and the animal was put down.

(The Ridgefield Press - July 30, 2013)

Zion teen receives $1.125 million after dog attack

ILLINOIS -- Attorneys involved in a dog attack case say a $1.1 million settlement, announced Monday, is the largest of its kind in state history.

It was two summers ago when a 120-pound Bull mastiff named Kong escaped his chain link fence enclosure, barreled toward a group of teens and clutched then-15-year-old Jordyn Bankston in his massive jaws.

Ed Miller and another neighbor say the attack went on for about 10 minutes before the neighbor found a way to free the teen.

"He came over and slugged the dog a couple of times," Miller said Monday, recalling the neighbor's actions. "[Kong] would not release the child. He had a lit cigarette and he put it on the dog's nose and [the dog] finally released him."

Two years later, the 17-year-old is due to receive $1.125 million from the dog owner's insurance policy for injuries and ongoing trauma. Attorneys said Bankston still becomes anxious when he sees a dog or hears one bark.

"He ripped up his scalp, severely ripped up his shoulder and right arm, his thigh [resulting in] nasty scars that required some extensive plastic surgery," said attorney Patrick Salvi. "[It was] a very, very traumatic event."

Salvi said Kong's owner had a primary policy as well as an umbrella policy. That umbrella policy raised the settlement limit from $350,000 to one million dollars -- the largest in state history.

Prior to this case, the settlements in such cases ranged from $400,000 to $835,000. The last settlement of this kind came in 1990.

In Bankston's case, the dog was put down because the animal had attacked other people and animals.

(nbcchicago - July 30, 2013)

Police defend actions in pit bull death

MISSOURI -- Jefferson city police are defending their actions after they say they were forced to shoot a large pit bull which charged at them while officers were responding to a call.

On Sunday shortly before 7 p.m. police responded to the 3700 block of Liverpool drive, after a woman called in and said her home was being burglarized. Charlotte Morehouse reported a man named “Joel” was burglarizing her home and she left the home for her safety, according to police.

 When officers got to the home, they confronted a man standing inside the front door. The officers told him to come out of the home and get on the ground. When the man came out of the front door, a large pit bull charged from the house towards an officer.

The officer retreated into the street, but was forced to shoot the dog once to defend himself. The dog was transported by Animal Control to a local vet for treatment, but was later pronounced dead.

Captain Doug Shoemaker said the officer had to use deadly force because he made a number of attempts to retreat, and the dog would not back down, placing the officer in eminent danger. "The officer tried to retreat, the dog continued to charge. This isn't a chihuahua, it's a 76 pound pit bull - it's a little bit different."

Shoemaker explained that it would have been impossible to "shoot to injure" instead of "shoot to kill" because of the risk of hitting something else or having a stray bullet penetrate a home or a vehicle.

 The man who was in the doorway turned out to be Charlotte Morehouse's husband, and he was leaving the house on his way to work. Jefferson City Police said an investigation revealed that although there was a verbal dispute prior to the 911 call, he had no idea she had called to report a burglary and no one by the name of “Joel” was at the home, nor was there a burglary taking place.

 Charlotte Morehouse admitted to lying about the burglary and about “Joel”.

 She was arrested for filing a false police report and taken to the Cole County Jail pending charges.

(KRCG - July 30, 2013)

Pit Bull owner believes dog was shot because of its breed

MISSISSIPPI -- A Bay St. Louis pet owner believes a neighbor shot her dog out of irrational fear, simply because it's a Pit Bull. But the neighbor told police the animal charged him, and he feared for his family's safety.

Four-year-old Matty is the Pit Bull that was shot. She's recovering at home right now. Matty's owner, Yolanda Christophe, said the trouble started after she got home from work Saturday evening.

"Usually, I let the dogs off the leash to go use the bathroom as soon as I get home," Christophe recalled. "Maybe five minutes after I let them off the leash, I heard five shots. I knew something was wrong. I started walking toward the street. I walked toward the street, and Matty was coming around the corner. When she came around the corner, she had blood."

Ronnie Vanny Junior declined an on-camera interview, but told investigators he shot the pit bull after the dog charged him.

"Per his statements and witnesses statements, the dog came up to his driveway where his wife and kids were out playing. To him, the dog appeared menacing," said Bay St. Louis Police Chief Mike DeNardo.

Police said Vanny told them he got his wife and children in the house, then grabbed his gun and began running the dog off. When he got the dog to the end of his road, the animal turned and charged him, and that's when he opened fire.

"If it was a Collie, a German Shepard, or any other dog, it would have never got shot," Christophe said. "I really feel like that. I feel like she was targeted because she was a Pit Bull."

Christophe believes recent cases involving Pit Bull attacks in Hancock County has her neighbor and others on edge. She said her Pit Bull is not violent toward people.

"I really believe that it might have something to do with everything that's been going on, but it's all about how you raise your dog. It's all about who you have around your dog. My kids been around this dog ever since she was born."

Her neighbor said the Pit Bull constantly breaks free from her leash, and he's called police and animal control numerous times over the past year.

"If the police had been called out here on numerous occasions, why wasn't my dog taken, if it was so vicious?" Christophe countered. "That's what they're saying. They've called animal control, they've called the police. I've never been aware of this. Except when I came home and the police were here, they said the dog was not on a leash. Never said she was terrorizing anybody, hurting anybody, trying to bite anybody."

[Hmm, maybe there are lazy animal control officers that don't want to do their jobs? Maybe they are required to see the dog's aggressive behavior themselves - not rely on witnesses - before they can do anything about the problem? What an idiot.]

Police say it's a matter that will likely be settled in court.

"We will issue a citation summons to both of them to appear in court and let the judge hear both sides," said Chief DeNardo.

Christophe said her neighbor should have been arrested for discharging a firearm within the city limits. But Chief DeNardo said the exception to that rule is when you're protecting your property, family, or defending yourself.

(WLOX - July 30, 2013)

Two children attacked by pit bull in Clinton

VIRGINIA -- Two boys are recovering from injuries in Clinton after they were attacked by a pit bull on Monday.
Police say a 6-year-old and the child’s 13-year-old cousin, Jovan Morton, were both attacked in the 11600 block of Cosca Park Drive by the pit bull, which fled with its owner after the incident.

Police have the pit bull in custody.

Both children are out of the hospital. Javon suffered a severely cut upper lip and scratches on his arms and legs.

(WJLA - July 30, 2013)

Pit bull-boxer mix handed over to animal control after attacking man in Freeland

MICHIGAN -- A man was hospitalized late July 25 after his mother's pit bull-boxer mix bit him, according to officials from Saginaw County Animal Control.

Animal Control Director Kevin Wilken said 911 dispatchers sent an animal control officer to the home on Kochville Road in Tittabawassee Township.

Wilken said the dog's owner reported that the dog, for no reason, attacked her adult son. The owner went to a neighbor's home, he said, to enlist help.

"It ended up needing three people to get the dog off the son," Wilken said.

The director said the owner surrendered the dog to the animal control officer. The dog has since been held at the Saginaw County Animal Care Center, 1312 Gratiot in Saginaw.

The owner's son was hospitalized due to injuries suffered during the attack, Wilken said, though he could not elaborate on the severity.

The dog will be held at the county facility for 10 days, a requirement meant to determine whether the animal is showing symptoms of rabies.

"It's something we're required to do by law," Wilken said.

The animal control director said, given the circumstances, the dog will likely be euthanized once the 10 days are up.

( - July 30, 2013)

Issaquah neighbors want pit bull out after poodle killed

WASHINGTON -- Families in an Issaquah neighborhood are keeping pets and small children indoors after a poodle was attacked and killed by a pit bull. Now,, they're trying to get the pit bull out of their neighborhood.

Jackson, a two-year-old poodle, died from punctures to his stomach and lungs. The attack happened in the West Highlands Park area near 4th Avenue and Denny Way Friday night.

Witnesses say a young boy was walking the pit bull when it became startled after coming face-to-face with the poodle.

[In the video it says an 8 year-old was walking the pit bull. Don't most laws say that a competent person must be in control of the animal at all times???]

“After the attack, it was just sitting there calmly. It wasn’t still trying to maul the dog. It was truly that it was just startled,” said neighbor Cassandra Miles.

[No, it wasn't 'startled'. It saw its purpose in life in front of it: to maim, maul and kill another animal. Once the poodle had been mauled to death and was no longer moving, the pit bull sat there 'calmly' because it had done its job. The prey was now dead.]

The same pit bull punctured Jim Rowntree’s dog, Fritz, two years ago.

“Our dog was aggressive towards the animal. The other dog took it as a sign of aggression. It was like, ‘OK. This is past my bubble. Game on,’” said Rowntree.

Fritz made a full recovery after hundreds of dollars in medical treatment.

“We as a neighborhood have to worry about the safety of our children and our pets, said Miles.

As a precaution, Liz Frost isn’t allowing her 7-year-old daughter Lilia to play outside.

“If it has a history of attacking dogs besides this one, I don’t think it should be in the neighborhood,” said Frost.

“It can hurt a child,” said Miles.

The owner didn’t want to comment on what happened, but claimed the pit bull is actually a “lab mix.”

“Maybe it has a grandparent that’s part lab but, no, if you look at that dog, it’s a pit bull,” said Miles.

According to Miles, owning a pit bull is against the area’s homeowner association rules. She believes the dog is a good dog, just not good for the neighborhood.

“It’s not OK for a family-friendly dog to stay in a neighborhood where it’s going to kill other dogs,” she said.

Neighbors are starting an online petition to get the dog in question out of the neighborhood. Issaquah Police referred the matter to King County Animal Control, which is expected to address the issue Monday.

(KING5 - July 28, 2013)

Kentucky: Kyle Hocker, 22, arrested on animal cruelty charge

KENTUCKY -- Kyle Lamont Hocker was booked in Kenton County, Kentucky on 7/30/2013. Unable to locate any additional information.

Name: Kyle Lamont Hocker ID: 65285820
Arrest Number: 816703
Jacket Number: 988870
Scheduled Release Date: N/A
Alias: N/A
Booking Date: 7/30/2013
Release Date: N/A
Height: 5′ 9″ (1.75 m)
Weight: 150 lb (68 kg)
Birth Date: 10/30/1990
Hair Color: BLACK
Eye Color: BROWN
Race: Black
Sex: M
Arrest Officer: EVANS
Arresting Agency: KC ANIMAL CONTROL
Arrest Date: 7/30/2013
Address: 41014


Date of arrest: October 2, 2015
Booked By: Kenton County Detention Center, Kentucky
Sex: male
Race: Black
Height: 5' 7"
Weight: 150 lbs
Hair Color: BLACK
Eye Color: BROWN
Tracking #840546
Criminal Charge:
  • Criminal Trespassing-3rd Degree

Man says he was acting in self defense after shooting "pit bull type" dog

WISCONSIN -- Police in Janesville say a man was acting in self-defense when he shot two of his neighbor's dogs, killing one of them.

 A press release on Sunday from the Janesville Police Department says the dogs were shot in man's one-car garage. The Janesville Gazette reports that officers responded to the shooting on Saturday night.

 Police say the two "pit bull type" dogs charged at the man, who retreated into his garage. The surviving dog fled and was taken by its owner to a veterinarian.

 Police say evidence in the case support the man's story that he was cornered by the dogs.

(WEAU - Jul 28, 2013)

Oklahoma: Copy say Alexander Clay, 22, drowned two ducks in acid to get back at his mother

OKLAHOMA -- Alexander Clay, a 22-year-old Oklahoma man, has been jailed after he allegedly drowned two ducks in muriatic acid.

According to police, Clay was angry with his mother Sunday night when he decided to march down to a man-made pond located near the family's home and kidnap two ducks.

Investigators say Clay then submerged both ducks in a vat of muriatic acid until both ducks were dead.

When Clay's mother returned home and discovered what had happened, Clay informed her that he would have drowned her in muriatic acid if she would have been home when the ducks were killed.

The mother immediately called police.

Clay was booked into jail and charged with a felony count of animal cruelty.

(The Weekly Vice - July 29, 2013)