Sunday, November 2, 2008
From left: Sophie Hermann, Judy Hall, Haiden McCurry and Amalia Hernandez.
The Heroes Among Us
Bonham, TX - Back in August, a 44-year old woman and 11-year old child were attacked by two pit bulls that jumped out of a truck. The woman, Judy Pless, was on her bike at the time. She told reporters, "I thought I was going to die right there on the sidewalk." She was airlifted to Parkland Hospital in Dallas with serious injuries. The pit bulls also attacked a young girl, Haiden McCurry, before the dogs retreated. Haiden was airlifted to Children's Medical Center in Dallas.
Two emergency helicopters flew two victims to separate hospitals in this attack.Haiden had just stepped out of the Creative Arts Center and was climbing onto her bike when the attack occurred. Luckily, Amalia Hernandez (pictured) was sweeping the front room when she heard the screams. She remembered the advice her husband once echoed, "Once those dogs grab you, they won't let go." She raced out the front door with her broom and beat the dogs off Haiden. Another employee, Judy Hall, grabbed a nearby girl and pulled her to safety.
The dogs' owner, John Hardy Taylor, 55, was initially arrested on multiple misdemeanor charges related to the attack. It was reported in late October that Hardy was indicted on two counts of attack by dog resulting in serious bodily injury (Lillian's Law). Taylor’s attorney now must decide whether he will plead guilty or take the case to trial. If convicted, Taylor could face up to 10 years in jail. The two dogs were impounded and euthanized shortly after the attack.
08/20/08: Dog Attacks, Trends and Dog Law Coverage of Texas
08/02/08: Hero Stories: Honoring Those Who Have Stopped a Deadly Pit Bull Attack
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| 8/28/2009 1:44 PM |
Likely due to the Tanner Monk case (which I believe is being advanced to the Texas Supreme Court), many Lillian Law-based trials may be on hold.
August 27, 2009 -- "The attorney for a Fannin County man charged with four counts of attack by a dog is questioning the Constitutionality of the statutes the charges are based upon. John Hardy Taylor was charged last October with four counts of attack by a dog, which is a third degree felony. Two dogs in his truck escaped while he was in downtown Bonham. Authorities say those dogs attacked a woman and an 11 year old girl.
He was in court Monday, but a judge postponed the trial and dismissed the jury. Taylor's attorney, Steve Miears, says Taylor is being indicted under the Texas Health and Safety Code. He is questioning whether dog owners should be held accountable if they are unaware that their dog is dangerous. Miears declined comment about whether his client knew the dogs were dangerous.
Right now both sides will put together briefings about whether the charges are valid under the code. Taylor is set to appear in court again on November 11th. On that day, the judge will decide what direction the case should go."
| 1/17/2010 9:18 AM |
UPDATE January 15, 2010
Judge dismisses charges against Fannin Co. man whose dogs attacked girl, woman
BONHAM, TX - In August of 2008, John Hardy Taylor's two dogs attacked an 11-year-old girl and a 44-year-old woman. Judge Laurie Blake ruled Friday that the statute under which Taylor was charged was vague and unconstitutional.
| 1/28/2010 1:03 PM |
UPDATE January 27:
Charges dismissed in dog attack
"Charges against John Hardy Taylor have been dismissed by Judge Lauri Blake. Taylor was charged with four counts of attack by a dog which is a 3rd degree felony. Judge Blake ruled the charges were vague and unconstitutional. The attack was August 2008, which resulted in both a 44 year old and 11 year old being careflighted from Bonham.
Taylor’s dogs were in the back of his truck when they began chasing 44 year old Judy Pless on her bicycle on 5th Street. An 11 year old girl was then attacked leaving the Creative Arts Center. Pless was careflighted to Parkland Hospital while the girl was careflighted to Children’s Medical Center in Dallas."
Judge says Lillian's Law in unconstitutional.