Preston dog which attacked cockapoo Charlie and his owner is given a 'chance' by judge after court is told it had never attacked anyone before

A woman in her 60s was bitten and left with a broken finger as she tried to save her pet dog from being savaged by a Staffordshire Bull Terrier which escaped from a house in Preston.

Friday, 28th February 2020, 2:09 pm
Jill Jones with her cockapoo Charlie

Jill Jones, 62, cradled her cockapoo Charlie to protect him he was set upon by two dogs which had escaped from a house on Stocks Road, Ashton, on December 30.

She had to undergo surgery for her hand injury and is unable to straighten her finger.

Today, the dog's owner, Liam Jenkinson, 28, of Friargate, Preston, was given 150 hours unpaid work after admitting his dog Buddy, a large Staffordshire Bull terrier cross, was dangerously out of control.

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Preston Crown Court heard the dog had escaped from his mother's home in Stocks Road, Ashton, on December 30, 2018.Prosecuting, Paul Brookwell said: "The two other dogs ran towards her and her dog Charlie, and they grabbed hold of and attacked Charlie. He was being dragged around by the other dogs yelping and screaming.

"She knelt down and put her arms around Charlie to protect him. This was ineffective and effectively meant the other two dogs were jumping over her and her and was bitten, she believes, by both dogs. She was pulled around and ended up on the floor.

"She could see blood everywhere both her and her dog were injured.

"Other members of the public came to assist and the police were called, and when police got there the dog in question was still there. He was kept by the police and he was taken to police kennels."

Miss Jones was kept in hospital overnight due to fears of infection from the bite, and had surgery.

She already had a shoulder condition that was made worse, and was left feeling very nervous. It affected her mental health, made her depressed, and she had flashbacks, the court heard.

Jenkinson said he would always muzzle the dog, but it had never displayed aggression before.

Defending, Rachel Woods said it had been an unfortunate sequence of events, and that he had been a responsible dog owner.

She added: " At some point that day his mother, Sue Jenkinson, had phoned the authorities to report the dogs were missing, so everyone had done their best."

Imposing 150 hours of unpaid work, the Honorary Recorder of Preston, Judge Mark Brown, said: " The general public is understandably concerned about situations where dogs are allowed to be out of control in a dangerous way, and particularly where innocent people such as Miss Jones, come to be injured by them.

"The court is very familiar with the tragic cases that sometimes arise and people can suffer either fatal or extremely serious injuries due to dogs being dangerously out of control.

"In your case, the evidence would suggest that apart from this incident you are a responsible dog owner.

"You have no relevant previous convictions and it seems the dog was being well cared for and shortly after the dog was able to get out through an insecure gate you mother telephoned the police to report the situation to them.

"You have said whenever you took Buddy for a walk he would be harnessed and muzzled, and all of that suggests to me you are indeed the kind of person who takes ten responsibilities of a dog owner seriously, therefore I'm not going to make a disqualification order against you."

He added he would give the dog a chance by making a contingent destruction order, which means it will only be destroyed if certain conditions aren't met.