Dog sentenced to death

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COMMENTS

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I am acquainted with Gary Harmon, generally enjoy his writing and miss his columns. Having said that, I am disappointed at the way this story leaves so many important unanswered questions it seems likely to be misleading. Let’s inject a bit of common sense.
I’m not at all sure the bitten person should be classified a “victim”. For example if the dog (“Dutch”) is so dangerous why did the former owner — apparently we don’t get to know her name — part with him instead of having him put down pursuant to municipal ordinance 6-2-9 (A)Vicious animals? Harmon didn’t say so, but the pit bull Dutch got in a fight with was apparently also owned by the “victim”. So she likes pit bulls and didn’t have the allegedly dangerous Dutch put down. This whole thing smacks suspiciously of a dysfunctional family soap opera.
This paragraph appeared in the news at Examiner.com (http://exm.nr/VpdoPj): “Dutch was trained and certified as a service dog after the incident. He also passed the American Kennel Club’s (AKC) Canine Good Citizen (CGC) test. AKC CGC evaluator Sandie Wyman said that Dutch is “anything but aggressive.” ”I am the CGC evaluator that tested this sweet dog,” Wyman stated. “He did pass with flying colors and even gave me a kiss afterwards. This means that he will receive a real title from AKC stating he can now visit elderly people at nursing homes.” Is that true? If so, it gives a lie to Judge Brown’s “findings”. And if it is true, why didn’t Harmon find out and tell us so? A far more complete version of the story appeared at dogheirs.com (http://bit.ly/UHA90B).
“Victim”? I think not. The dog was VOLUNTARILY in her care, so she was responsible for its behavior. If it had killed a child, she, not Jeremy Aguilar (who wasn’t even there), would have been held liable. Why did she voluntarily agree to take care of the dog, if it was already known by her to be vicious? That’s what most lawyers would call an assumed risk, since, as previous owner, she obviously knew the dog very well.
Any child knows you don’t get into the middle of a dog fight. In this case the “victim” got in the middle of a fight between her current pit bull and her former American Allaunt and incurred $28,028.95 in medical expenses. So who started the fight, her current dog or her former dog?
I am offended by Brown’s ruling which I believe is prima facie unconstitutional. $1,000 restitution for an assumed risk? $500 and two days jail for not having enough “remorse”? So now judges can fine people for what they think somebody else is thinking, and because they resent what’s on the Internet? Asinine on its face.
I don’t know if Dutch should be killed, or if the “victim” has issues. But I do believe Judge Brown should be fired. There is no place for that kind of constitution-disregarding arrogance on the bench.



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