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Dog bites woman's hand after bid for freedom

PUBLISHED: 14:00 05 June 2010 | UPDATED: 17:04 01 July 2010

Peter Walsh

A pet dog used “super canine strength” to break free from the grip of a man who walked it as a favour for an elderly woman and then bit a woman on the hand, a court has heard.

A pet dog used “super canine strength” to break free from the grip of a man who walked it as a favour for an elderly woman and then bit a woman on the hand, a court has heard.

Cestmir Kopecny, 63, from Friendship Road, near Fifer's Lane, Norwich, appeared at Norwich Magistrates Court on Thursday to admit charges of being in charge of a dog that was dangerously out of control in a public place and while out of control injured Nicola Lake.

Sattam Al-Mugheiry, prosecuting, said that Kopecny, a qualified vet from the Czech Republic, had taken the dog, a sandy coloured Ridgeback called Daisy, for a walk in Catton Woods at Catton Park, off St Faith's Lane, on December 16 last year.

Mrs Lake walked past with a black Labrador at about 12.45pm and as they passed Daisy managed to get away from Kopecny.

He said that Mrs Lake, who was wearing skiing type gloves, used her umbrella to try and get Daisy off of her dog and in the process was bitten on the hand resulting in a puncture to her ring finger. Mr Al-Mugheiry said that Kopecny was also bitten on the hand as he tried to regain control of the situation.

Neither Mrs Lake nor Kopecny required hospital treatment. Mrs Lake's dog received two small wounds on its leg and tail but neither injury required treatment.

Mr Al-Mugheiry said Kopecny, a man of previous good character, gave a full account to the police. He added that as Kopecny was not the owner of the dog no order for destruction or muzzling could be made.

Ian Fisher, mitigating, said Kopecny often walked Daisy as a favour to its owner, a 75-year-old woman who did not have the “physical prowess to be able to keep hold of her”.

He said that Daisy sometimes wore a muzzle and sometimes didn't as she did not like it. Mr Fisher said Kopecny, knowing that Daisy could be hostile to other dogs, had a tight hold of the dog with one hand on the lead and another around the collar and tensed himself as the other dog passed.

Mr Fisher said Kopecny, who taught maths and science privately, immediately tried to get to Daisy to try and regain control but “fell over” on the icy ground and to his “dismay” the dogs started fighting.

He said that Kopecny “apologised profusely” about what had happened and gave his name, details and full account to police because he is a “respectable” and “responsible” man.

Kopecny was ordered to pay the victim £50 compensation and £85 prosecution costs. He was also urged to make sure Daisy was muzzled when he took her out.

Have you been the victim of a dog attack? Call reporter Peter Walsh on 01603 772436 or email peter.walsh@archant.co.uk

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