Egdon: Police announce death of a young boy after dog attack
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The incident happened in a park in Wales in August last year, Wales Online reported. The animal was reportedly trained, but could only recognise commands in German, and didn’t understand English when his owner tried to halt the horrific attack. The toddler was in the Barry Sidings Countryside Park in Pontypridd with her grandparents when she was targeted.
She was rushed to Cardiff’s University Hospital of Wales where she had to stay for four days after undergoing surgery for her bites, leaving her with scars that will last until she is a teenager.
Her mother said she’s left with a fear of clawed animals and still has flashbacks and nightmares.
The dog’s owner Daniel Barge, 33, admitted to being in charge of a dog dangerously out of control in a public place.
Prosecutor Jeff Jones said: “The dog was trained in Germany and the new owner was told it could easily overstep the mark.
He was told to keep it away from children’s playgrounds and sand pits because it wasn’t good with children.
“Barge was walking the dog through the park on a harness when it nudged the little girl off her feet.
It gripped her back and neck and began shaking her for about 15 seconds while she was on the ground.
Passers-by and the girl’s grandfather all struggled to get the dog off her such was its grip.”
Mr Jones added: “There was knowledge that this dog had a past – it had been trained to be aggressive and had been used in protection and as a security dog.”
Merthyr Tydfil Crown Court heard the horrific incident triggered a mental breakdown in Barge and he spent 10 weeks in a psychiatric hospital.
Peter Donnison, defending, said Barge was “deeply saddened and remorseful” and arranged to have the dog put down immediately after the attack.
Barge was given a two month suspended jail sentence and ordered to pay the girl £500 compensation for her injuries.
Judge Richard Twomlow told him: “This was a terrifying incident for the little girl and for her grandparents who were with her.
“You had no reason to think that the dog would behave in this extreme way.
“But given the victim’s age and her injuries this does pass the custody threshold.
“There will be a prison sentence but it will be suspended.”
The judge said the £500 compensation was not intended to reflect the severity of the little girl’s injuries.
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