Dog spared by crown court judge after attacking Wigan man and his pet on walk
A pet owner who was badly injured after being attacked by a dog hopes the “community will be safer” after its keeper appeared before a judge.
Barry Frost and his cockerpoo Maisy were walking towards Old Coal Wash in Standish when they were approached by the dog on April 8 last year.
Bolton Crown Court heard the dog was a “muscular” black pit bull and Staffordshire cross named Oscar, owned by 59-year-old Keith Grundy.
The dog took hold of Maisy’s leg and Mr Frost went to pick up his pet, but he was bitten on his right arm, leaving two “gash teeth marks”.
Bob Sastry, prosecuting, said: “The dog pulled him to the floor by his right arm and when he stood up to look at his arm, he had severe discomfort in his right foot and that was later found to be a broken fifth metatarsal.”
The court heard Grundy walked away and when Mr Frost, 59, shouted to him, he said he would come back.
But Mr Frost, who lives in Standish, had to obtain CCTV footage of Grundy leaving the area to hand over to the police so he could be identified.
When he was interviewed by the police, Grundy, of Pearl Street, Whelley, was said to be “shocked” by the level of injury sustained by Mr Frost.
Grundy pleaded guilty to being the owner in charge of a dog which was dangerously out of control and caused injury when he appeared before magistrates in January.
Richard Jones, defending, said Grundy was walking two dogs and letting Oscar off the lead was a “foolish mistake”.
“He is anxious that letting the dog off the leash that day was a one-off thing. He had never done it before and he doesn’t know why he did,” he said.
The dog was not seized by the police and has remained with Grundy since. He has now been castrated and Grundy has bought a muzzle and a particular kind of lead.
Grundy, who is divorced, was previously of good character, the court heard.
Sentencing, Judge Paul Lawton said Grundy was “atypical” of the type of offenders usually before the court.
But he said it was a “serious offence” and dangerous dogs were a “scourge” on society.
Grundy was ordered to do 100 hours of unpaid work in the next 12 months and must pay £1,000 compensation to Mr Frost and £500 towards prosecution costs, as well as a statutory surcharge.
Judge Lawton imposed a contingent destruction order, which states Oscar will be destroyed unless certain rules are followed, including that he is castrated and wears a muzzle and a certain collar with harness in public.
After the hearing, Mr Frost said he had surgery to his arm following the attack and corrective surgery for his broken foot in October.
He said: “Not only did he see his dog attacking me as he approached me whilst I was on the ground, he pulled it off me and promptly ran away, offering no assistance to me whatsoever. I secured CCTV footage of him running away from the scene timed only minutes after leaving me, from which he was subsequently identified, and this information passed to the police.
“My overriding concern here has been the animal and the danger it could represent to others. Mr Grundy has had to answer to the courts for his behaviour and I respect their view. I sincerely dread to think of what could have happened had my wife walked the dog that morning, and the threat this animal could represent to children or other pet owners. Hopefully the local community will be safer following the assessment of the court.”
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