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16 thoughts on “2016 Dog Bite Fatality: Former Officer Charged with Felonies After his 'Personal' K-9 Killed a Man and Injured a Woman

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  1. How terribly sad! I was so hoping he would survive this attack.

    It's always surprising to see a DBRF caused by a breed other than a pit bull, but here again we see that genetics matter.

  2. As the former owner of a German Shepherd, and a legal expert in law enforcement, animal law, and Breed Specific Legislation, it is well known by law enforcement officers that Belgain Malinois are preferred over German Shepherds for K-9 duty with patrol officers for one fact: They are much better at "Bite Work". GSDs do not perform as well in biting – and here is the important part – and HOLDING that bite. The Malinois will hold that bite, keeping the suspect from really doing anything else than focusing on the K-9. This owner, being in law enforcement, would absolutely know this genetic trait of the Malinois breed. Now, as I known absolutely nothing about the coroner's official results as to the exact cause of death, it is impossible for me to say that this one trait of Belgian Malinois is directly responsible for this man's death.

  3. Such a horrible way to die, all because someone didn't contain their "pet".

    I believe all dog owners should be held criminally responsible for any damage their dogs do. We have to get rid of the 'one bite' laws and pound it into people's heads that if they don't contain their dogs properly, they may be arrested for assault or manslaughter.

    Either that, or we declare "Open Season" on all roaming dogs. Or both.

    We need an attitude change on the part of dog owners. We've gone too far toward "My pet is a part of my family, it's my furbaby", and folks don't get that these are animals with the equipment enabling them to maul or kill in their heads.

    I'm not against BSL; I think this approach needs to be taken in ADDITION to BSL.

  4. Please keep sharing our fundraiser for Terri Fear. She is going to need our help. It doesn't matter how large or small your donation is, its all equally important.
    Her husband is a true hero and deserves to know we are here to help his wife. He lost his life saving another person, now we need to honor him by helping his devastated family. Please donate and SHARE the gofundme link.
    Thank you and God bless.

  5. David Fear should get a posthumous medal for heroism – he saved his neighbour's life and he wouldn't have been injured or killed but for intervening to save her life. A selfless act, what a brave man.

    Malinois are crazy compared to German Shepherds. They bite like pitbulls (holding and shaking their head) BUT they are much, much smarter than pitbulls and much more agile and quick. They aren't as good at dogfighting as pits (less game, higher centre of gravity and less sturdy) but they're much better "manstoppers" which is why they excel at protection work.

  6. If your dog kills someone, you need to go to jail, period. I see this as no different in the level of GROSS negligence involved than drunk driving fatalities, and you know they don't get a mere slap on the wrist anymore.

  7. I used to be a 911 operator, and every now and then the K9 officers would bring their dogs in off the road. One officer I worked with had a Malinois. I've been around and worked around dogs my whole life and I've never been afraid of any dog. I was terrified of that Malinois. He looked at you like "give me a reason." The other police K9s were intense, but not at that level. I've also known Malinois' that are wonderful and well adjusted.
    Mr. Fear's death was horrific and completely preventable. The owner needs to be held responsible, period. I truly hope there is no obfuscation or duplicity on the part of the PDs involved. Condolences to the Fear family.

    • Malinois that aren't attack / schutzhund trained can be perfectly well adjusted dogs (provided they were socialised and trained well and they aren't from a bloodline bred for bite work). They're not a dog for the average pet owner though (like most working breeds).

  8. That it was a trained K9 is hardly surprising – K9 training is basically training a dog to bite people and not to submit even when those people fight back and injure the dog. Some programs also teach the dog not just to attack on command but to attack on certain triggers (e.g. person runs away from dog, person runs towards dog, person waves stick or bangs stick on ground, person shouts etc)- the triggers are so general that many things in normal everyday life could set these dogs off (kids playing baseball / softball for example).

    I really think K9s should be banned entirely from police forces – they certainly shouldn't be living in normal homes like normal pets putting members of the public at risk.

  9. There are so many problems with all of this. Where to begin?

    These dogs are very expensive. The taxpayers bought the dog. The training is very expensive. The taxpayers paid for the training. The dog then was never used for the purpose for which the taxpayers paid for the dog. This 25 year old took the dog. Yes, some mone changed hands, but this likely did not fully reimburse the taxpayers. Did they approve of this sale? Who allowed this to happen and gave permission for this? Was the point of all of this for this man to acquire this dog? Was the dog then used for commercial purposes?

    A 25 year old then had a very dangerous dog at his home. Why? How? How could anyone have allowed this to happen?

    I can relate to you something that was going on with police dogs back in the 1980s and 1990s in a small American city, and probably in others as well. Police officers took these expensive dogs home, and BRED THEM, selling the litters of puppies privately at a large profit, while the dogs were owned and paid for by the taxpayers.

    There needs to be oversight of all of these police dog programs. They NEVER belong in private homes. There is a lot of questionable activity, overpayment, risk, and many others factors involving these police dog programs. There has been a blurring of civic interests and private interests with the police dog issue.

    • Everyone that lives in a jurisdiction with a police K9 unit needs to write to their police force head office and their local council / municipality / town hall / mayor's office whatever, and request that these dogs are not kept in private residential homes where they can put the public at risk. If enough people complain eventually the powers that be have to address it. At the very least these dogs should be kept at the police stations they report to in special secure kennels so that they can't easily escape and wreak havoc on the neighbourhood.

      I personally believe it's cruel to train animals to be so aggressive (the training methods used are abusive) and dogs should not be used in this way at all. The dogs don't sign up to be put in such dangerous situations where they will be fighting for their own lives – the job is forced on them. why is it illegal to fight dogs but not to send an attack trained dog at a potentially armed suspect? It's just as cruel to the dog.

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