Man allowed to keep dog which attacked him in armed police standoff

This story is over

A dog owner whose pet staffie bit him during a stand-off with police has been allowed to keep the animal.

William Kelly was walking towards his home in Keats Close, Lincoln, following an earlier incident at Greetwell Quarry in which his partner was savaged by a dog when he found himself confronted by police.

Lincoln Crown Court was told today (Fri) that at the time officers believed that Kelly’s staffie was the dog responsible for the previous incident which left Joanne McCord, 22, with head and facial injuries.

James Armstrong-Holmes, prosecuting, said the large white dog, which was not on a lead, became agitated and started barking when it saw the police.

Kelly said he didn’t have a lead and then became agitated himself raising his arms and shouting “You’re not touching my dog. Shoot me”.

Kelly continued to be aggressive and was holding the dog back as it reared up on its hind legs.

Mr Armstrong-Holmes said officers tried to calm the defendant and a dog lead and a muzzle were thrown to him.

Kelly managed to put the muzzle onto the dog but then police drew their tasers because of the level of aggression being shown by Kelly.

The prosecutor said: “The dog muzzle came off and the dog bit hard into the defendant’s right leg and wouldn’t let go. It then bit his right hand before the defendant managed to get the muzzle back on.”

Kelly was arrested and taken away and the dog was also detained.

Kelly, 35, of Nettleton House. Thurlby Crescent, Ermine East, Lincoln, admitted being the owner of a dog dangerously out of control as a result of the incident in Keats Close on March 9, 2014.

He was fined £750 and the dog was given a conditional destruction order which means it has to be kept on a lead and have a muzzle on when out in public.

The court was told that Kelly originally also faced charges following the incident in which Joanne McCord and a second woman were bitten at Greetwell Quarry but those matters were not pursued after police received witness statements confirming that the animal in the earlier incident was not Kelly’s dog.

That dog has never been traced. Kelly had denied of two further charges of being the owner of a dog dangerously out of control in Greetwell Quarry and was formally found not guilty.

Judge Michael Heath told Kelly: “You behaved disgracefully towards those police officers. In all the hubbub the actions of the police that night were perfectly proper. I don’t criticise the police actions in any way.”

Michael Cranmer-Brown, in mitigation, said that Kelly had been to the quarry earlier in the evening where he smoked cannabis and drank wine with Ms McCord and another friend until the incident which resulted in Ms McCord being badly injured.

He said Kelly found himself confronted by armed police with a police helicopter circling overhead as he headed for Keats Close.

“Mr Kelly accepts that he did not cover himself in glory. He had just gone through the unpleasantness of seeing his partner injured and the next thing he is surrounded by armed police.

“He regrets his behaviour. He was behaving badly and the dog got caught up in it. As a consequence of his behaviour his dog was taken from him.”

Mr Cranmer-Brown said a veterinary expert who examined the dog concluded the it is not dangerous.

He said Kelly wants to be reunited with is dog and now intends to move to Wales to be reunited with Ms McCord.