Attack dog on ‘death row’

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A DOG is on “death row” after Chesterfield magistrates heard that it bit four people, including a 12-year-old girl.

The justices imposed a destruction order on the German Shepherd and banned its owner, John Anderson, from keeping dogs for four years.

Anderson, 60, of Cornhill Court, Nottingham Road, Alfreton, had denied four charges of owning a dog dangerously out of control but he was convicted following a trial.

John Wilford, for Anderson, said he intended to appeal against the conviction, adding: “He has 21 days to lodge the appeal.”

Mike Treharne, prosecuting, said Ernest Walker and the schoolgirl were attacked outside a Lidl store in Alfreton at 6pm last October 11.

“The girl said the Alsatian was loose. It snarled at her and, as she turned and ran away, it bit the back of her left thigh. A female got involved and managed to get the dog away and rang police,” said Mr Treharne.

The dog struck twice more on November 22. Victim Sheila Gent was walking past Cornhill Court at 11.45am when she was bitten on the back of her thigh.

The final attack took place an hour later. This time the victim was Lyndon Holliday, a neighbour of Anderson.

“It was growling at him, foaming at the mouth and looking rabid. It jumped up and bit his hand and he had to fight his way into his property.”

Mr Wilford told the court Anderson had kept dogs for over 40 years with no problems before or since these incidents.

“The dog is now muzzled and only taken out on a lead.

“The dog is his greatest concern because he cares for it and loves it and he doesn’t want it to be destroyed,” said Mr Wilford.

The retired window-fitter faced the possibility of eviction - an issue which could depend on the outcome of the hearing.

Anderson had previous convictions for using threatening behaviour and being drunk and disorderly, but he denied he had a drink problem.

Anderson was given a 7pm-7am curfew for six months and ordered to pay a total of £260 compensation to the dog’s victims, plus £500 trial costs.