Tuesday 21 August 2018

Man convicted after family pet chased after blind cyclist

A dog owner has been convicted and fined €200 after the family pet labrador ran out in front of a sight-impaired cyclist.

Anthony Brennan (57) of Drimina, Tubbercurry, pleaded guilty last week at Tubbercurry District Court to not having his dog under control at that address on 25th April 2017.

Cyclist John Goldrick told Judge Kevin Kilrane that on this particular date the dog came out of the defendant's house "quite aggressively".

"I wasn't going quick so I just stopped the bike. He retreated, I heard someone call him. I moved on and he came again," said Mr Goldrick.

Judge Kilrane asked the witness if he had ever spoken to the defendant about his dog.

Mr Goldrick said he spoke to Brennan the day he broke his collar bone on the first occasion he fell off his bike due to the dog.

"The second time, I just went to the Gardaí," he told the court. "This black dog regularly chased me," he added.

Defence solicitor Ms Laura Spellman told Judge Kilrane that her client no long had any dogs and had gotten rid of both his dogs.

She said she viewed the footage recorded by Mr Goldrick on a head camera and said it seemed to her the dog "ran alongside him and retreated."

Ms Spellman argued the dog ran "less than 100 yards", not a "significant distance."

"This was a mature dog, a family dog who slept with Anthony Brennan's son every night," she said, asking the Judge not to convict.

Judge Kilrane said it behoved households to keep their dogs under control and while the dog may be a gentle giant he still ran out in front of a cyclist and an electric fence "clearly wasn't working." He said Brennan had not been forthcoming with the Gardaí.

Accordingly he convicted and fined the defendant €200.

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