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Dog owner jailed for allowing his Staffy canine to savagely attack an 11-year-old boy in a park

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Kamal Saini
Kamal S. has been Journalist and Writer for Business, Hardware and Gadgets at Revyuh.com since 2018. He deals with B2b, Funding, Blockchain, Law, IT security, privacy, surveillance, digital self-defense and network policy. As part of his studies of political science, sociology and law, he researched the impact of technology on human coexistence. Email: kamal (at) revyuh (dot) com

A dog owner has been jailed for allowing his Staffy to heartlessly attack a boy,11, in a park – leaving him covered in blood and disfigured for life.

Benjamine Swindells, 26, was walking with his pet, which was off the lead, in February last year when the harrowing incident occurred.

The victim, who can’t be named, was playing football when he noticed the Staffordshire Bull Terrier running towards him, Leeds Crown Court heard.

He initially thought the animal only wanted the ball but then, the court heard, it leapt up and bit the youngster on the side of the head.

As he fell to the floor he tried to push the dog away and eventually it let go.

The boy then tried to run away but the dog chased him down again, jumped up and locked his jaws onto his forearm, dragging him to the floor, it was heard.

Leeds Crown Court was told Swindells, an unemployed ex-serviceman, failed to call his dog as the attack was happening in an attempt to bring the ordeal to an end.

Prosecutor Jade Edwards said the man slowly walked towards the scene, as opposed to rushing over to help. Swindells rejected that account.

He eventually dragged the dog away and put it on a lead before walking away, the court heard.

The boy’s mother arrived on the scene, in Wakefield, West Yorks., moments later and could hear her son screaming on his knees with blood all over him.

She asked Swindells if he was going to stay but he shrugged his shoulders and carried on walking, the court heard.

The boy was taken to hospital where he underwent surgery. Doctors told him he would be permanently scarred and may need further surgery later in life.

In a victim impact statement, the victim’s mum said it was “unforgivable” to see Swindells walking away and that her son now struggles sleep and is anxious about going out.

She added the incident was “totally preventable”.

Swindells, who has three previous convictions, admitted a charge of having a dog that was dangerously out of control.

Mitigating, Jessica Butterell, said Swindells had had the dog from being a puppy and had never been concerned about any aggressive behaviour from the animal before.

A former military man, he was discharged because he was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). He also suffers from bipolar disorder and split personality disorder, it was heard.

Ms Butterell said: “He is under no illusion of the seriousness of the offences. He is genuinely remorseful.

“He could have dealt with it better. He is regretful for that. “

Presiding judge, Recorder Michael Fanning said: “I can’t accept the remorse you claim to have, but I do accept you have real regrets over the lack of control of the dog.

“You made no effort to run after the dog. You did not try to pull the dog away.”

Swindells, from Wakefield, was jailed for 19 months and banned from keeping dogs for five years.

The Staffordshire Bull Terrier was ordered to be put down.

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