Wednesday, July 22, 2015

CHICAGO IL - MARILYN GRIMES TALKS ABOUT OCTOBER 18, 2013, THE DAY 3 PIT BULLS ATTACKED HER AS SHE WAS WALKING HER LITTLE DOG - HER CHIHUAHUA DIED AND SHE BARELY SURVIVED ALMOST LOSING BOTH HER LEGS


We often hear of dog attacks, some even fatal. So what’s being done to stop attacks or punish the dogs’ owners?  In this original report, CBS 2’s Mai Martinez found the answer is: not much. A warning: some of the above video may be disturbing.

Marilyn Grimes will never forget what happened October 18, 2013. She and her dog were attacked by three pit bulls in an alley in the 8700 block of South Cregier Avenue.

A review of city and county records from 2012-2014 shows more than 5,700 dog bites were reported in Chicago, and another 8,600 in Cook County.  The city deemed only 280 of those dogs dangerous, the county, just 27. A small number were euthanized and most owners faced maximum fines of just $500.

“There’s no consequences to deter them,” Grimes said.

In Chicago, if a dog is deemed dangerous, animal control can:

1.) Allow it to remain with its owner with restrictions
2.) Recommend it for euthanasia or
3.) Ban it from the city

Not enough says Grimes.

“There’s people being maimed, there’s people being killed by these animals,” she said.

Her dog died in the attack and she barely survived, almost losing both of her legs. After more than a year of surgeries and rehab she’s finally walking again.

“This is what I have to live with every day. This is a constant reminder,” Grimes said. “My body as I knew it is no longer.”

In Grimes’ case, all three dogs were surrendered by their owner and euthanized. The owner was cited and fined.

Shortly after the attack the owner sent Grimes this letter, writing “my dogs are literally just here for protection.”

An indication Grimes says the owner should have known the dogs could be dangerous if they got loose.
Grimes would like to see owners held accountable criminally.

“It should be a crime,” said Homer Glen Mayor George Yukich. “If someone knows that their dog is vicious, they should make sure they do something about it.”

Mayor Yukich says the village just this year implemented a new ordinance making it easier to investigate potentially dangerous dogs that behave in a threatening manner. The process can even begin before an animal bites someone.

“The owner has to be responsible for the pet,” Yukich said.

Marilyn Grimes is hopeful one day state lawmakers will agree.

“In my lifetime I’m going to see laws to protect victims,” Grimes said.

The Illinois Humane Society is trying to find state senate support for a reckless owners bill that would hold owners more accountable.

The owner in Grimes’ case was fined $30,000 which the city finance department says she had not paid. It has now been referred to a collection agency.


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