Man in court over dog attack

A Gate Pa man has been charged with being the owner of Staffordshire bull terrier-cross which allegedly attacked a meter reader, causing deep wounds to his right arm that required skin grafts.

In Tauranga Registrar's Court yesterday, Benjamin Jo Graham, 28, faced a charge of being the owner of dog which attacked a person and caused serious injury.

The offence is alleged to have occurred on February 19 this year during Clive Claridge's visit to Graham's Tom Muir Drive property.

As Mr Claridge approached the meter next to the garage door, the dog lunged at him and bit him on the right arm, it is alleged.

It is further alleged that as the complainant was knocked backwards the dog lunged again and bit him on the right forearm, resulting in deep bite wounds.

The dog had since been euthanased after being surrendered to Tauranga City Council animal services.

Graham was further remanded to appear in Tauranga District Court on May 14.

Also in the same court yesterday was Tauranga man Thomas Tareha Taite, 47, who also faced a charge of being the owner of dog which attacked a person and caused serious injury.

The charge relates to an allegation that Taite's American pitbull terrier mastiff-cross attacked a 64-year-old man visiting his Kairua Rd property on February 19.

The complainant is alleged to have suffered deep puncture wounds to his right leg, which required hospital treatment.

The dog is being held at Tauranga Pound until the matter is resolved.

Taite's next court appearance is in Tauranga District Court on May 12, when he must plead to the charge. He has indicated he will plead guilty on that date.

- By Sandra Conchie of the Bay of Plenty Times

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