Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Woman charged over pit bull attack

Tue, August 1, 2006

A woman who was supervising two pit bulls that viciously attacked her London neighbour and his dog last week has been charged under a bylaw.

Janet Ball, 55, was charged with two counts of allowing a pit bull dog to run at large.

With the city bylaw charges against her, Ball could face fines up to $5,000, said London police Staff Sgt. Rick Harriss.

Bill Pargeter, whose golden retriever, Tasha, is recovering from surgery at the University of Guelph, said the charges are appropriate.

"These dogs almost destroyed my life."

"They would have killed me and my dog if the police didn't show up."

He said his neighbour -- she was supervising the unmuzzled, unleashed pit bulls when they slipped under the fence and attacked -- should bear responsibility for the damage the dogs caused.

"This was a terrible thing."

The attack ended only after police shot the two pit bulls, killing one and wounding the other, which was put down.

Ball wasn't available for comment yesterday.

Pargeter, a 42-year-old factory worker who's been off work since last Wednesday's attack, said he hasn't decided whether to pursue a lawsuit.

"Right now, my main concern is to make sure my dog gets better and to get better myself," he said.

Ball is expected to appear in court on the bylaw charges at a later date.

"This is a pretty serious thing that happened," said Harriss.

Jay Stanford, the city's manager of environmental services, said he wasn't surprised to hear charges had been laid.

"There have been biting incidents in London before," he said. "(But) this is very unfortunate. The owner did not ensure the pit bulls couldn't get out of the yard."

The message to all pit bull owners is that they need to be familiar with the law, he said.

"They should understand all of the requirements of a responsible pet owner. Hopefully, this particular dog and its owner will recover," said Stanford.


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