July 29, 2021

The Editor Speaks: A Pit bull and an elderly lady

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When I read the press release about the pit bull being shot during a police raid on a house in the Bodden Road area of George Town and then later having to be put down, I did have a certain amount of sympathy for the dog.

I was also puzzled why the press release gave the age of the man who was arrested at the scene (he was 54) whilst the woman arrested with him her age was not. I concluded that perhaps she was 54, too.

My sympathy for the dog was not for it being a pit bull. I do not like pit bulls. However, the dog was doing exactly what it was trained to do. He or she was protecting his master.

If a snarling pit bull comes at you, it is a frightening experience.

The Police Report said during the operation the pit bull aggressively ran towards one of the officers as if to attack. Having had pit bulls run at me I know the difference IF they are going to attack and they ARE going to attack. Obviously the officer was not that experienced and did exactly what I would have done if I had been him. Shoot first.

At my home we have a German Shepherd, Sugar, and living near us are pit bulls. When I used to walk my dog we had to pass the house with the pit bulls. Lots of them. If there was only one pit bull it would bark, snarl first and would immediately run away when Sugar rushed at it. Then it would return with a pack of them but Sugar would not back off. Sugar ran at all of them and some were frightened. I would have to pull Sugar away by his leash as she thought this was all good fun.

I have to confess there was a chain link fence between them!

My point is, Sugar was protecting me. Sugar is a trained dog but I wonder what would have happened if that police officer had acted aggressively towards me…?

Now I have learnt (through social media) that the woman was elderly with one source saying she was 92!

I can now only surmise that this was the reason her age was not given.

The reason I am bringing this up is a similar situation could have resulted at my house. Not that I was or have ever harboured illegal (or even) legal guns.

This concerned a ticket for a parking causing an obstruction outside a church on a Sunday on a cul-de-sac that was 20ft wide. The car was also 2ft on the church property. The car was in my wife’s name but I had been the driver. After sending in photographs of the car and where it was parked I was told the ticket would be quashed. This was from both the Acting Police Commissioner and the Inspector who was head of traffic.

It wasn’t.

To cut a long story short a few months later my wife was at home after just being released from hospital after a horrifying car accident. She had broken ribs and a fractured sternum. I received a phone call from the most obnoxious and aggressive police officer I have ever spoken to. He wanted to know where my wife lived as he had a warrant for her arrest for not appearing in court over the same parking offence.

Although I explained all this to the officer he told me he would be down in two hours to take my wife to the courts. That gave me time to take her to a doctor to write up a medical report she couldn’t travel. If that makes any sense please explain to me. I told him the police already had that information from the two police officers who attended to her at the hospital and had visited her here at this house only the day before.

He wasn’t interested.

I then lost my temper telling him he would have to bring an army of officers if he though he was going to take my wife from her bed.

I then called the Deputy Police Commissioner. He apologized and said he couldn’t understand why this had happened and he would immediately deal with it.

He obviously did as I never heard another word.

Now if I hadn’t had this number there could have been a similar situation as what happened at the incident described above.

Even with Sugar on a leash she would have tried to attack as I would have also lost my head in trying to prevent my wife, who then was 82 years old being removed by an aggressive and rude police officer.

Sugar could have been shot and I would have had to be restrained all over a parking ticket that should never have been written up in the first place.

I only learnt yesterday that a family member was stopped and pulled over by the police saying she was driving erratically and had failed to stop at a roundabout. She said she didn’t know what he was talking about and said she didn’t have to stop at a roundabout if there was nothing coming around the circle. The officer that was with him agreed with her so he dropped that but kept her there for another fifteen minutes examining all her documents and the car before letting her go.

It’s these sort of trial activities that put up a barrier between the police and the generally law abiding public. Co-operation and trust between the police and the public goes both ways.

Having complained about the officer I had dealing with on the telephone, the two that saw my wife in my presence were exemplary. Polite, sympathetic and courteous.

Warning to the police. If my wife is riled up and believes she is right and you act aggressively towards her, she can become an angry pit bull very quickly, even though she is an elderly lady.

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