Court orders dog be destroyed after second attack

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A court has ordered that a dog be put down after it attacked a child and injured a man in a second incident.

The order was passed on Lion, an eight-year-old Dogue de Bordeaux by Blackpool magistrates.

Deborah Barnes-Dunne, a 57-year-old professional dog walker, of Ullswater Avenue, Fleetwood, pleaded guilty to having a dog which was dangerously out of control at a Freeport Shopping Village car park.

She was sentenced to six months in prison suspended for two years, put on a two months curfew from 8pm to 6am and fined £100 with £200 compensation plus £115 victims’ surcharge by Blackpool magistrates.

Prosecutor, Malcolm Isherwood, said the victim and two friends were walking back to their car on the overflow car park at Freeport on November 26 about 4pm.

He said a large scary angry looking dog ran up and grabbed his arm with its teeth. He ended up on the ground with the dog on top of him.

He said if he had not been wearing a long-sleeved jacket he said he would have been severely injured.

Barnes-Dunne then dragged the dog into her car. The victim, who said there were adults and children about at the time, suffered a cut to his thumb and grazing to his legs.

He said Barnes-Dunne apologised and asked him not to report the matter to the police. She went to a cash machine and gave him £250 for the damage to his clothes.

A witness said the dog had no muzzle on and was not on a lead.

At the time of the offence Barnes-Dunne was on a suspended prison sentence made in November last year for an offence of having the same dog dangerously out of control when it injured a child.

The court on that occasion ordered that if the dog did not wear a muzzle and be on a lead at all times in a public place, it should be destroyed.

Gerry Coyle, defending, said in June this year his client’s home had burnt down and she was living with a friend.

She had been diagnosed with mental health issues and was on medication.

Mr Coyle added: “The dog is like the dog in the film Turner and Hooch – a big slobbering type. It is eight and has hardly any teeth. The breed suffers from heart back and leg problems.”

“The day of the offence the dog had been sick in the car, so the defendant went to a quiet parking place to give him a drink of water.

“The dog was full of exuberance and jumped up at the man, knocking him over. She had apologised and was full of remorse.

“Later that evening the police came, took the dog and put him in kennels.

“Since then she has been heartbroken.”