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CA #1 in Fatal Pit Bull Attacks in 2019 - Is Animal Services Protecting People and Pets?

ANIMAL WATCH-On November 12 the Los Angeles Animal Services Commission failed to uphold the decision of GM Brenda Barnette that a Pit Bull involved in three incidents of investigation by officers, including two serious attacks on neighbor's dogs, should be declared 'dangerous.' 

 That dog may, instead, soon be living in your community or next door to you, without your knowledge. 

"Pit bulls killed 30 times more animals in 2018 than human crime, "Animals 24/7 reported on January 6, 2019, emphasizing that an increasing number of attacks were "rehomed" Pit Bulls from shelters.  

Could this be a key to why California has already reported 7 confirmed human deaths resulting from Pit Bull attacks in 2019 -- almost double the next closest state? Texas has only 4 -- followed by  Michigan, Kentucky and Florida -- each with 3 pit bull attack fatalities this year, according to National Pit Bull Victims Awareness?  

At the Commission meeting, the Board pondered the fate of the Pit Bull that had been adopted from Pasadena Humane Society. (There was no indication of whether behavior assessment was done or the reason the dog was impounded.) The owner testified she was not advised of any history of aggression.  

However, three investigations were done by LA Animal Services, according to the testimony.  One involved an attack on a small dog while the owner of the Pit Bull was walking her dog off-leash in the up-scale Los Feliz area and said she did not know about the leash law. The next time, reportedly the dog escaped when a gate was left open and another attack occurred on a neighbor's German Shepherd (it was unclear at the meeting whether this severe attack was fatal.) The Pit Bull was not licensed in Los Angeles but retained a Pasadena license, the owner stated. 

ARE TOO MANY DOGS GIVEN A "SECOND CHANCE" TO ATTACK? 

Although soulful tears of remorse were shed and anguish expressed over the potential euthanasia of the Pit Bull at the meeting, apparently the injuries and possible death of other people's pets from the attacks still did had not signaled significant dangerous behavior to the owner and some Commissioners.  All that mattered was saving the Pit Bull she had relinquished to relieve her own liability but begged to "have another chance." 

 It was decided that the dog would have a behavioral assessment by a dog trainer (with which GM Barnette agreed) to decide whether it could be declared "not dangerous" and released to "rescue," which could adopt it to someone outside the City of Los Angeles or place it in a sanctuary for a lifetime sentence in a cage. But, at least, the owner could still feel she "saved" it. (November 12 Meeting audio here.)  

A behavioral assessment is a determination of how the dog acts when it is not under imposed control. This dog had already had two behavioral assessments-- It failed both times.

And, "Pit bulls killed 30 times more animals in 2018 than human crime," Animals 24/7 reported on January 6, 2019, in its sixth annual survey, emphasizing that an increasing number of attacks were "rehomed" Pit Bulls from shelters. 

Let's review just a few of the dogs that have been released or made available for adoption by LA Animal Services during GM Brenda Barnette's tenure (and with few changes to the Commission membership) and incidents surrounding attacks: 

Dog with History of Aggression Attacks Child at Los Angeles Animal Services 'No Kill' Shelter 

LA Animal Services: Pit Bull with a Violent History Attacks Potential Adopter ... 

LA Animal Services' Employee Mauled by Pit Bull ... Who Cares? 

GM Barnette ‘Misinforms’ Commission about Killer Pit Bulls’ Status … This is Not the First Time 

Pit Bull that Attacked L.A. 'Foster' with Known History of Aggression - Can Shelters Escape Liability? 

Another Pit Bull Attack at LA Animal Services 'No Kill" Shelter...Increase in Dangerous Dogs 

LAAS Shelters Packed with Pit Bulls, GM Barnette Proposes Licensing Dogs to Homeless with No Address 

CALIFORNIA PIT BULL ATTACKS (Reports within the past 10 days) 

Apparently, the epidemic of Pit Bull attacks is not limited to Los Angeles.  We don't know how many of the dogs in media-reported attacks had a history or violence or were "re-homed, second-chance" dogs.

 
Loose pit bulls attack woman, kill her dog in Sonoma County

KRON4  (Nov. 10)

Last Sunday, a dog owner lost her best friend of seven years while walking with the 12-pound gentle, friendly pug-mix, named Lucy, when two loose Pit Bulls approached.  She said the dogs initially seemed friendly , but "their behavior quickly changed." She said she has never been so scared as she scooped Lucy up into her arms and the dogs continued biting her legs and attacking Lucy. They finally ripped the little dog  from her arms.  While she screamed for help, they mauled Lucy to death.  She said the Pit Bulls were later found and impounded by animal control, but a lot of people will not feel safe if they are released. 

Riverside County Woman Mauled By Roaming Pit Bulls, Dog Owner Found Dead

Nov 11, 2019 

A woman was mauled by two pit bulls running loose on a street in Mead Valley, where their owner resided, Riverside County Animal Control spokesperson John Welsh said Friday. He said she had suffered severe wounds.  Welsh said the victim was walking with her bike when the two Pit Bulls pulled her to the ground and one dog was "going for her neck, and the other...biting her shoulder."  A neighbor used a shovel to stop the attack and the dogs ran to a nearby property, where they were secured.  When deputies went inside the house, the found the dead body of the owner of the Pit Bulls. The dogs were impounded, and an autopsy will be performed on the owner, but Welsh said it is not believed the dogs caused the death. 

'I'd Do Whatever It Takes': PB Man Defends His Labrador from Pit Bull Attack 

NBC 7 San Diego (Nov 11

A San Diego man suffered injuries as two Pit Bulls attacked him and his beloved Yellow Labrador on Monday while they were walking in Pacific Beach. He said he tried to protect his dog and kept punching, choking and throwing the dogs away but they kept returning to attack. He said they were clinched on his Lab's neck and tore pieces of flesh from her body.  Neighbors joined in to stop the dog, which they said have been a problem before.  

San Diego Humane Society told NBC-7 it had two reports on the dogs in 2018, and both times,"one dog broke out of the yard and bit a victim, but the victim did not send proof of a bite." They said the dogs will be impounded for a bit quarantine and the owner will be cited. It is not known if the Lab survived. One commenter wrote, "There are 2 preschools within 2 blocks. It's going to be a kid that gets attacked next."  

Two pit bulls accused of killing miniature horses returned to Owner 

Calaveras Enterprise  Nov 1, 2019

Nov 1, 2019 - Calaveras County Animal Services manager Evan Jacobs confirmed to the Calaveras Enterprise on Wednesday that the dogs were found to be microchipped and returned to their owner after “insufficient evidence was found” by department officials to connect the canines to other reported attacks across the county. 

On October 17, the Sacramento Bee reported, Dogs mauled two miniature horses to death Monday morning in what the owner calls “the biggest nightmare I’ve seen” in Calaveras County, KCRA reports. “I look out and see a dead horse, and another bloody horse shivering and bleeding to death and two pit bulls looking up at me,” said owner Robert Hughes of Valley Springs. “They were calm and licking blood off themselves.” 

However, in the November 1 statement to the Calaveras Enterprise, Animal Services manager Jacobs said, “This is the first documented incident regarding either of these dogs and does not meet the legal standard for Animal Services to file a ‘potentially dangerous dog’ petition under state law.” 

The pit bulls, a male and female, were reportedly impounded by Calaveras County Animal Services on Oct. 17 when their owner, 45-year-old Raymond Carringer, was arrested on suspicion of an unrelated felony probation violation in Stockton. The dogs were returned to an "unidentified owner," according to the Enterprise. 

2019 Dog Bite Fatality: Man Mauled to Death by One or More Vicious Pit Bulls in Madera, California  

Dogsbite.org  Nov 11, 2019 (UPDATE 11/13/19): Police have identified a man found dead in a dry riverbed on Monday as Lasaro Macedo, 38.  "An autopsy was conducted and ruled that Macedo died as a result of injuries he sustained during a dog attack," states a release from the Madera Police Department. An aggressive male pit bull was shot and killed at the scene and a second dog believed to be involved in the attack was seized. 

Police are asking the public for help in locating the owner of the two dogs, who they identified today as Heather Anglin.,,, Police provided a photograph of Anglin, who has a noticeable tattoo on her neck. Anglin's Facebook page shows at least six pit bulls and a litter of pit bulls as recently as two weeks ago. Anglin is running a backyard pit bull breeding operation. 

Man, 21, mauled to death by pit bulls in California home 

WTKR News 3 (Oct. 11, 2019)  

Police said a Modesto, California, family's two pit bull pets killed a young man Monday who had been staying the night with them. They discovered him around 7:00 a.m. Police believe a 13-year-old Pit Bull, named Beze, and a 5-year-old, named Saxon, attacked Bryan in the upper body around 7 a.m., leaving him down and unresponsive. An autopsy is being performed. 

The dogs were placed in quarantine at the Stanislaus County Animal Services Agency. 

CALIFORNIA TOPS STATES IN NUMBER OF DOG BITES IN 2018 

On  May 4, 2019,  EDWARD J. BABBITT APC  San Diego Dog Bites Attorney, posted: 

California has the unhappy distinction once again of being the top state in the nation for dog bite injuries. According to recent data from the Insurance Information Institute (III.org), Californians presented 2,166 dog bite claims in 2018, with each claim averaging $45,543 for a total of $98.6 million. That’s nearly double the closest-ranking state—Florida—where 1,281 dog bite claims totaling $56.2 million were filed. There were 17,297 dog bites throughout the United States, resulting in $675 million in claims. (The claims amount includes non-bite injuries by dogs; i.e., being knocked down by a dog, etc.) 

IS ‘SAVING’ DOGS THAT HAVE BITTEN MORE IMPORTANT THAN PROTECTING PEOPLE? 

The safety of service providers, the public and other pets is rarely a factor in discussions by the LAAS Commission, other than when they are obligated by statute to consider the constant string of Dangerous Dog appeal hearings in LA -- most involving Pit Bulls that have already attacked and seriously injured people and animals in the city.  

Some of these dogs are just moved out of LA with "rescues," where they can be re-adopted to maul or kill more unsuspecting pets/neighbors. Many are left with the LA owners with "terms and conditions."  

(See Pit-Bulls Lead in Dog Attacks in 2018, CA Insurance Costs Soar)  

IS CALIFORNIA'S DOG LAW THE PROBLEM OR ARE LOCAL POLICIES LAX? 

If a human seriously injures or kills another person or illegally kills an animal, there are immediate criminal consequences and CA law also allows strict penalties for not controlling animals (specifically dogs). Yet, animal laws are very loosely written in LA Municipal Code.

Here's that the LA Animal Services website states about "Dangerous Animals: "An animal may be considered dangerous if it has attacked a person or another animal. An animal Control Officer will go out and investigate to determine if the animal is dangerous. If found dangerous, the animal may be impounded for further observation." 

Section 53.15.2 of the LA Municipal Code states: Dangerous Dogs. It is illegal to allow your dog to assault, menace or threaten another person or other animal. Failure to control your dog could result in losing your dog and the right to own a dog for three years. 

CA STATE LAW and penalties are thoroughly explained by Shouse Law GroupPenal Code 399 PC is California's criminal law on failure to control a dangerous animal. This section applies when: (1) The owner of a dangerous animal (usually a dog) willfully lets the animal run free or doesn't use ordinary care in keeping it; and (2) As a result, another person is killed or suffers "serious bodily injury." 

HAS PIT BULL WORSHIP REACHED A CULT MENTALITY? 

BUT, California has an even greater problem. . .It is the religious cult-like worship of the Pit Bull, much of which is generated by the omnipresence of Best Friends Animal Society and its biblical description of the America's misunderstood dog, and other major humane organizations that protect Pit Bulls specifically and to find an excuse for or defend any behavior by this breed. 

What is the real cause of the increasing level of death and destruction caused by these dogs? 

We will be exploring this in greater depth on CityWatchLA.com. (Sign up as a CityWatcher so you don't miss some interesting history on this subject.)