Monday, 20 September 2010

Not Guilty! Met police get it wrong again.

Following the successful challenge of “type” with the well known case of Brandy and Karma DDA Watch and Wheldon Law prove they are on a winning streak as another innocent pet goes home.

Kaiser 2.5 years and her son Patch 16 months were seized by police as alleged pit bull types while being exercised by their owner on 21st January 2010. Owner Ms Robinson immediately contacted anti BSL organisation DDA Watch who offered support while also referring her to Tina Hay of Wheldon law.

Tina Hay instructed breed Id expert and behaviourist Kendal Shepherd to carry out an assessment on both dogs. The assessment deemed both dogs to be no danger to the public and while Patch fitted the vague standard for a pit bull “type” Kaiser, his mother, did not.

Using the same team that brought a not guilty verdict for Brandy and Karma, Ms Hay put together the case for the defence. With no argument on “type” Patch’s case was heard a month prior to Kaisers. It was determined that as he posed no danger and had a responsible owner he could be returned provided he was neutered, tattooed and followed the restrictions relating to a registered dog.

Last week Kaiser’s case was heard at Bromley magistrate’s court. Fighting an accusation of “type” is incredibly hard to do, as the section one of the DDA, the section on “type”, is one of the few acts where the burden of proof is reversed. This means that it is for the defence to PROVE their innocence not for the prosecution to prove their guilt. And prove Kaisers innocence they did as the judge found her innocent and after nearly nine months in secret kennels, Kaiser went home.

It is yet another great result and one DDA Watch hope to see more of. Alison Green, founder of DDA Watch says:

“Having your dog taken for the way it looks rather than the way an owner allows a dog to behave is ludicrous. It is costly for the tax payer and heartbreaking for owners. Owners who fail to determine their own dogs breed type are often criminalized if they choose not to kill their dogs. Identification then ends up being a matter for experts to argue and in this case and Brandy and Karmas case, the Metropolitan police got it wrong. If some of these countries so called finest experts cant get it right how on earth do we expect everyday dog owners to know?

And with seizures increasing throughout the U.K DDA Watches message is clear.

“We urge everyone effected by Breed Specific Legislation to fight back. Get a good legal team with knowledge of canine legislation. Get experts in that have a good track record. You may find your dog is the next to be found Not guilty!

Kaiser found Not guilty!

Patch allowed home as a registered dog.