CREWE ENGLAND - A 20-YEAR-OLD NUTTER WILL NOT BE JAILED AFTER HE ALLOWED HIS STAFFORDSHIRE BULL TERRIER "CASH" TO ATTACK A BLIND WOMAN AND HER GUIDE DOG AT ALTRINCHAM TRAIN STATION
A dog walker will not be jailed after allowing a STAFFORDSHIRE BULL TERRIER to gore a blind woman and attack her guide dog.
Gardener Joshua Atkinson, 20, was handed a 12-month community order and told to do 120 hours’ unpaid work after he admitted being in charge of a dangerously out-of-control dog which attacked a couple in their 60s at Altrincham train station.
But magistrates could not consider destroying Atkinson’s Staffy called Cash - because he said he wasn't the owner, the Manchester Evening News reports.
His victim has blasted the sentence and said he deserved to be jailed.
Margaret Goulden, 64, from Sale, who was bitten four times on the leg, said that justice had not been done.
She said she had not wanted the animal to be destroyed as ‘it wasn’t the dog’s fault’, but she added: “I think even if it was a short sentence he should have had a jail sentence. He was in charge of that dog on that day. Who’s to say he’s not going to do it again?”
The dog is said to have slipped his lead, leapt across railway tracks onto a platform and first went for Margaret’s guide dog Eaton, a six-year-old German Shepherd-Retriever cross.
The Staffy attacked Margaret, knocking her over on the platform and leaving her with blood gushing from a leg wound before Atkinson pulled it away.
Eaton was unhurt.
Atkinson, of West Street, Crewe, who also admitted possessing a small amount of cannabis, was given a 12-month community order with a 15 day rehabilitation order and 120 hours’ unpaid work.
He was told to pay the victim £300 compensation plus £85 court costs and a £60 government surcharge when he appeared at Manchester and Salford Magistrates’ Court.
The court heard the magistrates could not consider whether to order the animal’s destruction as the owner was not in the dock.
Police kept Cash for a month for a behavioural assessment and then released him back to Atkinson because of the cost of kennelling the animal, according to prosecutor Tina Cunnane.
She added that Atkinson, who had claimed to be minding the dog for a friend, had returned Cash to the owner somewhere in Warrington.
Katy Young, defending, said Atkinson had given Cash back to its owner but didn’t know his address.
Chairman of the bench Harry Brett said “This must have been a terrifying incident for the woman and anyone else on the platform.
“This was a wild dog running about and biting people”.
After the hearing Margaret’s husband Stephen, 66, who is also blind, said he was sceptical about the defendant’s claim that he wasn’t the owner.
“I have my suspicions he probably sold the dog on and gave it to somebody else,” said Mr Goulden, an MBE.
“I would hate to think the animal would be put down, If it’s treated properly and looked after, it probably would have been OK,” he said.
Margaret added that no leash had been found.
“He could not have slipped the lead because there was no lead. He had a harness and a lead would have been attached to that, I would have thought. The police said there was no lead,” she said.