Friday, November 24, 2006

Dog attack

The three councillors returned together to Perry Avenue on Wednesday night to find two young men trapped behind the gates of Perry Hall Park.

At first it was hard to take in what had happened to them - but it rapidly became clear that they were soaked in blood and that they had suffered very real head and facial injuries.

The young men said they had been attacked by some men with a dog whilst taking a late night walk in the park following a visit to the Garden Gate pub in Handsworth Wood. They were clearly shocked and very miserable.

After calling the emergency services, we got some ladders from Jon Hunt's house and helped them get out of the park. The police arrived, promptly, as they came down the ladder. The ambulance took a little longer to arrive.

One of them is now facing major surgery in hospital and we wish him all the best for his recovery.

It appears they were attacked somewhere near where the River Tame runs under the railway, knocked to the ground with a baseball bat and then the dog set on them. The police believe it was a straightforward robbery.

Even if this is so, using a dog for this purpose is not straightforward and will confirm the fears that many people have that fierce looking dogs have become not just fashion accessories for some people but weapons of intimidation.

I know the police are reviewing the Dangerous Dogs Act which was passed about ten years ago to see what powers it gives. This will send shock waves amongst users of this park and of other public areas ( see earlier posting on Thornbridge Avenue). I just hope it does not undo the good work that is underway in deploying local officers, such as park wardens, neighbourhood police, police community support officers and our ward's environmental warden to try to make our public places feel safer and more pleasant for users.

1 comment:

Betty said...


On the TV news report last night, DCI Gez Moore said that (dog fighting in the park) "....hasn't been an issue that has been brought to our attention before..."
It was discussed at the meeting in Rocky Lane Methodist church between local residents and the police on September 12th wasn't it?

It's a shame that it has taken this horrific incident for the police to take seriously the reports of dogs being trained to fight.