Grantham court: Mother banned from owning dogs after fight

Court news.
Court news.
Have your say

A pregnant mother-of-four pleaded guilty to being the owner of a dog dangerously out of control in a public place.

Leanne Colman, aged 24, of Stone Pit Lane, Skillington, entered a guilty plea to the charge relating to an incident on March 12.

Shelley Wilson, prosecuting, told the court how on the date in question the complainant was walking her lakeland terrier cross, Lemmy, accompanied by her six-year-old son and a friend with their two dogs and children aged six and eight.

Mrs Wilson said that while all the dogs in this group were on leads, as they walked past the defendant’s house a brown staffordshire bull terrier ran over to Lemmy and went for his neck.

A black Staffordshire bull terrier then also ran out of the property which resulted in a dog fight between all three.

Mrs Wilson added that as this was taking place, Colman and her partner stood watching, while the complainant tried to get the other dogs off Lemmy and her son was screaming and hysterical.

At one point the black dog had its jaws around the throat of Lemmy, before the dogs were separated.

The complainant then addressed Colman about having to take her injured dog to the vet, and Colman replied: “If you think you are getting any f***ing money then you’ve got another thing coming” before adding “Bring it on”, when it was suggested the police would be contacted.

Mrs Wilson said the vet identified Lemmy had “grazes and bruises and was very lucky”, as well as noting that this was not the first instance of Colman’s dogs attacking other animals including killing chickens on a nearby farm.

Sonia Bhalla, defending, said that while her client had pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity her account of events was somewhat different.

Miss Bhalla said that Colman had just returned from the school run and accidentally left the gate open, allowing her dog Molly to run out.

While she admitted Molly was ‘a bit boisterous’ she described it as a mutual dog fight which her other pet Buster then got involved in ‘to stick up for the other dog’.

Miss Bhalla provided evidence that the defendant’s dog was also injured, and said that Colman had been holding one of her young children at the time so couldn’t stop the fight.

She added that Colman, who has children aged five, four, three and one and is pregnant, had been put under “no end of stress” by the case, particularly as she had owned Molly and Buster since they were puppies.

Magistrates said they had considered whether to order the destruction of the dogs, but decided to ban Colman from having them for two years.

Colman must also pay a fine of £250, a victim surcharge of £25, prosecution costs of £85 and compensation for the complainant’s vet bill of £50.