Wednesday, August 22, 2007

No Defense For Pitbulls Attacking Sue Gorman or Pedophiles Like Jack McClellan Stalking Children in The Court of Public Opinion? Update 8/27

After the last Pit bull story, Legal Pub received emails and comment posts about how unfair we were about Pit bulls. They contend that statements like "they can unexpectedly become psycho without warning" is unfair because it is "how they are trained" that counts. Our response has always been that most owners of Pit Bulls never anticipated that they would become violent. An example out of Gig Harbor, Washington will likelly cause nightmares for Sue Gorman for the foreseeable future. Two pit bulls apparently entered her house through a pet door and attacked her while she lay in her bed. The Pierce County woman was able to shoot at the dogs, run out to her car and call 911. Sue Gorman, 59, was taken to St. Joseph Medical Center in Tacoma. The pit bulls killed Romeo, a Jack Russell terrier owned by the neighbor, who entered the house during the attack. Officers pepper sprayed the dogs until they were detained. The dogs were taken to the Humane Society for Tacoma and Pierce County.

Zack Martin owns the 2-year-old female (Betty) involved in the attack and was taking care of the male (Tank). Martin said Tank was chained up in his backyard because of a past incident but Betty was allowed to run loose in the fenced backyard. "We never saw it coming," he said. "They're the kinds of dogs you'd let play with your babies." Animal Control Officer Brian Boman, said animal control officers have had past run-ins with pit bulls.

Jack McClellan

While in the eyes of the public, there may be no defense for pedophiles, Jack McClellan is currently free on charges that he violated a restraining order. Jack McClellan, an alleged pedophile, was released from jail after prosecutors dropped a criminal case accusing him of violating an order prohibiting him from being within 30 feet of children anywhere in California for three years. The order was invalid because the judge failed to give McClellan proper notice of a hearing required to argue the merits of imposing such a long-lasting order before it is issued. McClellan was arrested Aug. 13 for violating the order when he was found near a child care center at the University of California. McClellan had a camera but claimed there wasn't any film in it. McClellan was arrested a few hours later for trespassing after he did an interview with the TV station on university grounds. Prosecutors did not pursue the trespassing charges. Superior Court Judge Melvin Sandvig issued the order Aug. 3 requiring McClellan to stay at least 30 feet away from every person under age 18 in California for a three-year period.

McClellan previously maintained a Web site in Washington where he posted photos of children he had taken in public places. He lives on supplemental security income and apparently suffers from depression. McClellan has always contended that he wouldn't do anything illegal with regard to children. McClellen has a hearing set for Friday concerning a temporary restraining order which would prevent him from coming within 10 yards of children in the city of Santa Clarita. As always, all suspects are innocent until proven otherwise!

Update 8-27: McClellan has announced he will move from California due to the unreasonable restrictions placed on his freedom!


blonde bombshell said...

Wow, this pit bull thing is getting out of hand.

As for McClellan, he needs some help so that he does not get his hands on some children.


jill said...

Shell, I agree the McClellan man needs some serious help.

As for Pit Bulls, I think all owners should have to post a $10,000 bond. If the bite someone, then they forfeit the bond. If they are such a gentle breed, should be no problem for owners to post the bond.


Joey said...

Shell, I do not agree that pitbulls are getting out of hand. It is a select few that make the news.

As for McClellan dude, get him some help. Put him in a treatment facility so that he can attempt to get his problem solved.


david said...

Life is short. No place in life for worrying about your neighbors pit bull mauling you. Get rid of the breed or make them post a bond to own them like Jill says.

No need to be macho by having a macho dog. Get a life.

David S. from Sacramento

colleency said...

A wise friend (and former dog breeder / trainer) told me a long time ago that to get an idea of a dog's nature, look at what it was bred to do. Retrievers were bred to retrieve game, and drop it at their owner's feet. (how hard was it way back when to train a dog to relinquish it's food?!) Herding dogs often try to 'herd' ants marching in a line, or small children towards a wall. Terriers were bred to dig into rodent holes, leading with their noses (most sensitive part) - no wonder they're so feisty and fearless! Scenting dogs are still 'hose noses' when they go for walks; birding dogs are distractaed and look towards the sky. It's their nature.

Pit bulls, descended from bulldogs and Staffordshire terriers, were bred to fight. Pure and simple.

So - the Gig Harbor dogs got loose and attacked a woman as she slept in her bed. Maybe she snored loudly and provoked them (not!) - Or maybe they got in touch with their ancestral pit bull nature, and did what came naturally.

Not to say that any breed is perfect, or 'risk free.' I knew a Golden Retriever - carefully, professionally bred to be a Guide Dog - that was a biter. (obviously, he was dropped from the program.)

But when it comes to pit bulls - it's a matter of 'how lucky do you feel?'

Ms. Calabaza said...

I am a dog lover and have been blessed to have had two Shetland Sheepdogs. My first died last year and I now have a pup. They both have had very similar traits. I used to say my first one would herd in a cocktail party. This pup has the same herding instinct that I'm sure these dogs were trained to do for many, many years. So, I agree with Colleen. I like Jill's idea - if the owner's are that sure their dogs are not dangerous, then show it. I would also love to read research on the personality profile of the person who chooses the pitbull as a pet. I have a social worker friend who does home visits in a poor urban area. She told me once she looked at the backyard of one of the apartments she visits and every dog out there was a pitbull.

Legal Pub said...

Got to agree. The bonding of pet owners is a good idea. As for the type of owners of Pit Bulls, I hate to stereo type. But over the years of defending such clients and in my work with a humane society, a common theme of "protection" is sometimes uttered.

The idea is if I have a pit bull, my home is safe... But is it?

colleency said...

I don't know that posting a bond would solve much ... As Ms. Calabasa noted, many of the people who own them don't have the means of posting a bond. (would pit bulls become the new 'luxury items'?!) Michael Vicks could have posted that bond a hundred times over - but the dogs were still trained killers.

I don't know what the solution is. Maybe posting bonds is a good start. It's just that it's kinda the same thing as felons not being allowed to own guns - doesn't stop a damn thing.

Anonymous said...

Too many dog bite cases!

Anonymous said...

Pit bulls and McClellan are both inexcusable!

Anonymous said...

Pitbulls are better then McClellan. It is an insult to include the animals with such a pervert.

yolanda said...

Get some professional help, Jack before it is too late. Liking little children is not healthy!


Anonymous said...

I happen to know the owner of one of the dogs. He fell in love with a puppy after his fater died horribly. His friend brought them over. It just happened to be a Pitbull. He was not looking for one.
He loved that dog like none would ever believe, but it was a freakish, horrible incident that happened and the press has printed MANY un-truths. I am very proud of how he had her (Betty) trained and I am proud that he was trying to help a friend out by "baby-sitting" her dog Tanker. He liked to help his friends.

The whole things was an accident.

Were they perfect people? No. But no one cares that this kid (YES, kid) was a great student, into sports, didn't do drugs or drink (although life gave him MANY chances to choose a less-then-desirable lifestyle), did volunteer work and worked with up to 150 children a day.

I had/have him and his dog in my home 4 to 5 times a week, with my elderly dogs and cats, horses and goats, and his dog was sweet, well behaved and loving.

Sadly, there was an incident that included many dogs (including un-neutered male dogs) that escalted and a woman that was hurt by getting into the middle of a dog fight (not attacked in her bed as the press LOVES to say...). Something I might have done too.

She went through a horrible ordeal and Zachary would take it all back if he could. If someone could figure out how to un-do accidents, then the world would be a great place indeed. We could eliminate the word.

If people really knew the whole truth, not the twisted one, they would actually feel the pain this kid has endured over this (obviously, nothing like what Sue went through, but he hurts too...) and realize that something terrible has happened to a wonderful kid.

Sending him to prison will take a kid that has survived so much and TURN him into the low-life the press has tried to make him sound like.

The Media makes me sick that they can print/say anything and not have to verify their information. Shame on them.

Anonymous said...

I don't think the story or comments were really directed at Zack. They are intended to illustrate that Pit Bulls can change personalities and attack with little or no warning.

Had not heard that the attack did not occur in Sue's home. Point however is still the same. If pet owners think fighting breeds are safe as pets, then they should put their money where there mouth is... specifically pass a law requiring owners to post a bond. The bond money can be used to pay for medical bills of the victims.


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Legal Eagle 3 said...

Spammers quit wasting our time or the pitbulls will be turned on you!