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Skarbiesz, Lubartow. The dogs bit the cyclist. The trial of the owner of two Belgian Shepherd Dogs has started

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The trial of a man who is responsible for exposing a man to the danger of loss of life has started before the District Court in Lubartów (Lubelskie Voivodeship). According to the prosecutor’s office, Jerzy B. did not take care of his dogs, and they bit the cyclist. The defendant, who had previously pleaded guilty, now claims he does not know whether his dogs bit the 48-year-old. “They could have licked him posthumously,” he told the court.

The tragedy happened at the end of July last year in the village of Skarbiesz (Lubartów poviat). According to investigators, two dogs attacked a 48-year-old man riding a bicycle.

As a result of being bitten, the cyclist bled out and died. The District Prosecutor’s Office in Lubartów established that the owner of the Belgian Shepherd Dogs was 63-year-old Jerzy B. and accused him of exposing a person to the immediate danger of loss of life or serious damage to health.

The accused faces up to three years in prisonTVN24

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Earlier he was about to admit, now he said he didn’t know if they were his dogs

On Wednesday (March 22), the man’s trial began in front of the District Court in Lubartów. Although – as Agnieszka Kępka, spokeswoman for the District Prosecutor’s Office in Lublin, reported in July 2022 – During the interrogation, Jerzy B. admitted to the alleged acts and explained, among other things, that the dogs had escaped from his property, he said otherwise in court.

– I do not admit to the act I am accused of, because I do not know if it was my dogs that bit this man – the accused argued, adding that according to him, “they could have licked him posthumously”.

He claims that the property was fully fenced and the dogs were not hungry

As he explained, nine months before this event he bought two Belgian Shepherd puppies to guard his plot in Krępa, where he kept agricultural machinery. He also said the property was fully fenced. There were old tires on it, but in his opinion “they (dogs – ed.) would never get out of these tires in their lives – everything is too big, too high”.

Referring to the issue of animal feeding, he indicated that he supplied 1.2 kg of sausage per dog per day. And each of them had a bucket of dry feed and water in the pen.

They weren’t hungry either. The dogs were unleashed, the accused said.

He noticed that the dogs were gone. He says he drove around looking for them

In court, Jerzy B. admitted that he had never had dogs of this breed before, and he heard from the seller that they are good guardians of the property and do not show aggression towards people. Also in the opinion of the 63-year-old, the dogs were not aggressive.

– When people came to me, these dogs neither attacked nor bit anyone. People played with these dogs, they were friendly to humans – said the accused.

He also noted that he had been staying and spending the night on the plot usually since spring. He stated that when he left the property, he locked the dogs in the pen with padlocks, and when he was in the yard, he let them run around.

Read also: What should you do if an aggressive dog attacks you?

– Perhaps on Thursday I noticed that they were free, that they were gone. How, I have no idea. I looked for them and drove around the meadows, around the area, but I couldn’t find them anywhere – I was looking for them for three days – the defendant explained in court.

He admitted that after the tragedy that took place in Skarbitesz he talked to the sister of the bitten man. “I’m very sorry about that, I’m sorry,” he said.

On Wednesday, the sister of the deceased 48-year-old also testified before the court

There was a piece of skin with the victim’s DNA in the dog’s digestive tract

The body of the 48-year-old was found on July 23 last in the village of Skarbiesz. Nearby was a bicycle belonging to him and fragments of clothing with visible signs of damage. On the man’s body, numerous abrasions of the epidermis were found, wounds of various depths, which could have resulted from biting and scratching by dogs. Then, a dog and a bitch of the Belgian Shepherd breed were found nearby, whose owner – according to the investigators’ findings – turned out to be Jerzy B.

Jerzy B. was charged with exposing a person to the danger of losing his life (photo from July 2022)Lublin Police

A crayfisher was called to the scene and tried to catch the dogs with a grapple, but it was impossible due to the animals’ aggression. Attempts to put the dogs to sleep also proved ineffective, therefore – as it was written in the indictment – due to the threat posed by the animals, a decision was made to shoot them.

The dog’s autopsy showed that fragments of human skin were found in its digestive tract, matching the victim’s DNA profile.

He faces up to three years in prison

The prosecutor’s office accused Jerzy B. of exposing a person to a direct danger of loss of life or serious damage to health. According to the investigators, by leaving the dogs unattended on the property, he did not use adequate security measures to prevent the dogs from getting out of the property, which resulted in the dogs escaping in his absence.

Read also: Dog on a leash – what rules apply to the owner? When should a muzzle be worn?

According to the findings of the prosecutor’s office, the fence had no foundations, and the clearances between the ground and the elements of the fence were significant and were locally up to 24 centimeters. It was also found that “piles of waste were stored directly next to the fence on the property, which the animals could climb and then jump over the fence”.

The act alleged against Jerzy B. is punishable by up to three years in prison. The man has not yet been punished.

Main photo source: Bartłomiej Wójtowicz/PAP

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