THESSALONIKI: Owner of dogs that killed 50-year-old woman remanded in custody


The 37-year-old owner of three dogs that attacked and killed a 50-year-old woman in the village of Neohorouda near Thessaloniki last Sunday was remanded in custody on Wednesday following his testimony to an examining magistrate.

The suspect denied the charge of manslaughter, expressing his grief at the death of the victim. He insisted that the dogs had opened a small hole about 30cm across in the wire fence around their enclosure, from which they escaped without him noticing.

According to sources, he also claimed that the dogs had been trained and had never exhibited aggressive behaviour.

However, he did not convince the prosecutor and the examining magistrate, who unanimously decided he should remain in custody.

"I had taken care of the dogs; they were supervised and secured in the yard of my detached house, and they did not roam freely. There was no hole in the mesh of the fence," he emphasises and explains that he had adopted them two years ago because they were abandoned and in bad condition, but he took care of them, and they were in good condition. "Their rich fur was shining from the care. The dogs had their spot and only roamed in the yard of the single-family house," he says.

"The fence up until shortly before the accident had no hole. I never let the dogs out and roam unaccompanied," he says and adds that in the two years, he has owned them, they sometimes went out when they saw his car, but "I surrounded them and secured them in the yard".

The dogs were startled

The defendant then claims that the dogs reacted at noon on Sunday to the loud noise made by the chainsaw used by the 50-year-old woman working in her house's yard.

"Dogs have acute and sensitive hearing and according to the dog training centre and the lessons of common experience, they react to piercing and deafening noises with panic, fear, sensing great danger and rushing to deal with it," he said.

He then explained that at noon on Sunday, the 50-year-old was cutting trees with a chainsaw in the yard of her house, which is 100 metres away. The dogs were secured in the yard, as he claims, and because they felt a great danger, they broke through the mesh of the fence, got out and directed aggressively to the yard of Elisavet Kouziortis, where the noise was coming from.

"Indeed the dogs, when they heard the sharp, piercing and loud noises of the chainsaw, which lasted for hours, felt great danger and tried to escape from the fence to meet the danger, were tormented by the noise, from friendly became aggressive, broke the mesh of the base of the fence from the side of the plot and they got out and headed towards Elizabeth's yard which was 100 meters away and according to the police they furiously attacked Elizabeth while the gardener was at the back of the garden. It is not the fault of the unfortunate Elizabeth, the gardener, or anyone else. The dogs are not aggressive, nor do they roam freely. This is the explanation of the accident, for which I am not responsible because the dogs broke through the mesh at that moment and got out," he asserts.

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