PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. – In a “Dangerous Dog” incident, April 3rd was a harrowing night on the sidewalks of 121st Street North in Seminole.
Two large dogs – one a pit bull – escaped the home of their owner, Sean Alexander Young, 42, as Arthur Jones, 72, walked his little white, 19-pound dog named “Dipsey.”
Minutes later, Pinellas County deputies were notified of gunshots heard and an ongoing verbal dispute in the neighborhood.
According to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Incident Report, they arrived on the street to find a 90-pound black dog dying from multiple gunshot wounds. The dog belonged to Young and was shot four times by Jones.
The report by the attending deputy states, “I made contact with the large black dog’s owner…As I was speaking with Sean, I could smell a strong odor alcoholic beverage emitting from his person as he appeared very emotional. Sean eventually calmed down and advised his large black dog…and his brown dog had escaped out of his residence. Sean stated he instantly ran after them but was unable to catch up.
Sean said shortly after he could hear what appeared to be his dog fighting with another dog as gunshots pursued. Sean said he then began yelling and arguing with Arthur, which was ultimately split up by bystanders. It should be noted, Sean advised his dog was aggressive, but never towards humans.”
The report continues that contact was made with Arthur’s dog-walking companion, Walter Manning, a neighbor, who reported Dipsey was first attacked by Young’s large brown dog, who was pulled away from the attack by neighbor Dona Conn.
Manning then told the deputies a large black dog, unleashed and without an owner, “grabbed ahold of the small white dog and began to drag the dog around like a ‘rag doll.’
Manning then reported he exerted several strikes against the black dog to make it release “Dipsey,” but his efforts were to no avail. The dogs were shortly thereafter separated, but the large black dog aggressively headed towards “Dipsey” again, only to be shot multiple times by Jones.
The Sheriff’s Office spoke with Jones to get his side of the story, who indicated neighbors attempted to keep the dogs separated but he had to shoot in order to save “Dipsey.”
The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Incident Report states that, “Based off the investigation, it has been determined Sean’s black dog could be defined as a ‘dangerous dog,’” under Florida SS 767.11.
The statute’s subsections define such a dog as one authorities surmise has aggressively bitten, attacked or endangered, or inflicted severe injury on a human or being on public or private property; has more than once severely injured or killed a domestic animal while off the owner’s property; or has, when unprovoked, chased or approached a person upon the streets, sidewalks or any public grounds in a menacing fashion or apparent attitude of attack, provided such actions are attested to in a sworn statement by one or more persons and dutifully investigated by the appropriate authorities.
In a small-claims suit, Jones wants Young to reimburse him $460 — the fees a veterinarian charged to treat Dipsey’s injuries.