Bianca Ibanez has been cited by Marion County for having a dog running at large and having a potentially dangerous dog, said Marion County Dog Services manager Dean Freeze.
On April 3, a black-and-white female pit bull-type dog ran out of a home and attacked Fifi, a 9-year-old longhair chihuahua who attempted to block the dog from lunging at its owners.
Fifi's 10-pound body was thrashed repeatedly by the pit and was later euthanized.
The owner at the time hauled her dog back into her home without apologizing or providing her name, but later gave $120 to pay for euthanization expenses, said Amanda Reyna, Fifi's owner.
Ibanez told Marion County Dog Services the door to her property was opened by one of the adults living in the home, which operates as an adult care home.
Ibanez LIED AND CLAIMED
WHY WASN'T BIANCA IBANEZ CITED FOR OWNING A VICIOUS DOG IN MARCH 2016? OR JULY 2016?
Freeze said these are the third and fourth citations against Ibanez for the dog's conduct in the past calendar year. Ibanez was cited in March and July 2016 because the dog was running at large.
In March 2016, a neighbor complained the dog was on the road and trespassing onto nearby properties and at one point chased their significant other.
In July 2016, a complaint stated Ibanez's dog was roaming in the street and tucked in her tail, bared her teeth and growled to passersby. At the time, the dog had recently given birth to puppies, and the puppies were also roaming the street. Ibanez told dog control at the time of the citation that she would only allow her dog outside to relieve itself. Dog services issued a verbal warning.
Ibanez did not respond to requests for comment in time for publication.
MARION COUNTY DOG SERVICES MANAGER DEAN FREEZE SAYS THEY HAVE NO AUTHORITY TO DO ANYTHING
Running at large citations typically result in a requirement to keep the dog leashed at all times in public, but Freeze said the Marion County Dog Services doesn't have much enforcement power.
"A (hearing officer) can say, 'You have to repair your fence or build a fence to keep the dog contained,' but no one is going to enforce that," Freeze said. "It's basically a fix-it ticket. We're not police so we don't have a lot of authority in terms of enforcement."
Ibanez is scheduled for a hearing on May 18th at 9 a.m. at 555 Court Street NE, where a Marion County hearing officer will listen to testimony from Reyna, Ibanez, and any other witnesses to provide testimony of the incident.
The hearings officer may impose a corrective action for the dog owner, but Freeze said it is impossible to speculate on the officer's potential judgment. A penalty can range from a monetary citation or a requirement to muzzle a dog at all times.
"The largest fine that I have heard of is $360, and that was (for) a failure to have a license," Freeze said.
The second citation Ibanez is facing this year — having a potentially dangerous dog — carries more serious potential penalties.
A "dangerous dog" refers to a dog that inflicts serious physical injury on a person or kills a person without provocation and in an aggressive manner.
"That could lead to something more than just keeping their dog contained," Freeze said.
In extreme cases of a dog seriously injuring or killing a human, the hearings officer could require the dog be euthanized. In this case, however, the dog attacked and killed another dog, not a human. The penalty may or may not reflect that factor, Freeze said.
"The penalty depends on prior events, and the hearings officer can impose conditions or restrictions like that," Armstrong said.
Reyna said she has seen the pit bull-type dog off its leash and roaming around the neighborhood since the incident a couple weeks ago.
"I can't even walk my kids on that road until I know that it will be taken care of," Reyna said.
"All we really want is for the neighborhood to be safe and for no one to go through what our kids went through," Reyna said. "My two-year-old (child) is still asking about Fifi every morning and asking to feed her. It's been hard."
MARION COUNTY - AND THE STATE OF OREGON - HAVE LAWS TO LABEL DOGS VICIOUS. WHY WASN'T THIS DOG LABELED VICIOUS LAST YEAR?
Both Marion County and the state of Oregon have laws that say that if a dog is running at large and menacing people, it can be declared potentially dangerous. This designation comes with restrictions that the owner MUST comply with in order to keep their dog.
If Dan Freeze says the animal services officers don't have any authority to do anything when it comes to the local laws, why didn't they cite under state law? Or get someone who has the authority to do so cite under state law?
Marion County law:
“Potentially dangerous dog” means a dog that:Oregon state law:
1. Without provocation and while not on premises from which the keeper may lawfully exclude others, menaces a person;
2. Without provocation, inflicts physical injury on a person that is less severe than a serious physical injury; or
3. Without provocation and while not on premises from which the keeper may lawfully exclude others, inflicts physical injury on or kills a domestic animal.
"Potentially dangerous dog" means a dog that:
(a) Without provocation and while not on premises from which the keeper may lawfully exclude others, menaces a person;
Both Marion County and the state of Oregon have another designation, "dangerous dog", for dogs that aren't in compliance with the "potentially dangerous" label, or do other - worse things than running around trying to bite people.
If this dog had been declared potentially dangerous after it chased the first neighbor in March 2016, then when it was loose again in July 2016, Ibanez could've been hauled back to court and the designation upgraded. Maybe if she'd had to deal with all these restrictions, she might have simply gotten rid of this vicious dog.
According to the Oregon Department of Human Services, Bianca Ibanez has been licensed through the state (#521495) out of her home to have up to five adults living there with her - and the killer pit bull.
Inspire Care Home
3285 Glendale Ave NE
Salem, Oregon 97301
Senior Care Authority
Capacity: 5 adults
The Statesman Journal newspaper reported on November 9, 2013 that Ibanez had been sued regarding unpaid wages and breach of contract:
Esther Ibanez-Castillo v. Bianca Ibanez and Inspire Care Home: Charges unpaid wages and breach of contract, seeks $33,765 allegedly owed.
(Statesman Journal - April 19, 2017)