COMMENTARY BY PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY SAM SPITAL :
“On November 15, 2012, it was reported in the UT San Diego news that a 30-year old woman who was hired to clean a house in Fallbrook, a community north of San Diego, while the owners were on vacation was mauled to death by 8 bulldog-mixes on the loose in the backyard. The dogs ranged in age from about 4 months old to 3 years old and were impounded by the County Department of Animal Services, whose Deputy Director said the dogs were bred for sale, ‘crossing Olde English Bulldogs with American Bulldogs to make them a little bigger,’ noting the largest dog is about 105 pounds. The police found 24 marijuana plants in one of the bedrooms of the house, and a further investigation is being conducted in that regard.
The family of the deceased woman will no doubt file a Wrongful Death lawsuit against the owners who allowed a pack of animals to be loose, knowing the house cleaner would be working and likely go in the backyard to clean the exterior side of the windows, if nothing else. It was reported there was a running garden hose near her body.
Many have argued that these breeds pose a substantial danger to life due to their genetic traits often labeled as ‘gameness’ or refusal to get off and their ‘hold and shake’ style of biting. Others claim it is the owners and not the breed, and they point to the absence of any signs of aggression. Unfortunately, when serious or deadly attacks occur, no matter how loving and caring the owners might have been and the lack of any previous warnings &/or aggressive behavior, the media, members of society and the courts hold the owners accountable and in some cases in addition to civil liability of potentially a million dollars or more, also for a criminal offense.
In the present case, if the dogs are determined to be ‘dangerous,’ they will be euthanized. In San Diego during the past year, there have been reported an 8 month old baby killed and a senior citizen died from severe mauling. Many others have been reported in the news to have suffered life-threatening injuries, but did not die.”
–PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY SAM SPITAL