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Neighbors Want Dog Declared A 'Danger' After Several Attacks In Winthrop

WINTHROP (CBS) - A Winthrop dog owner will get a ruling on the future of his pit bull mix in the next 48 hours, following a hearing to determine if it poses a danger.

"I love animals," said owner Jeffrey Clemens, "and I don't want to see anything happen to anybody."

A neighbor's security camera caught the most recent of several incidents over the last 18 months or so, in which his dog "Cora" has attacked a leashed dog in the neighborhood around Myrtle Avenue – either charging form its yard or escaping its own leash.

"The dog bounded over and attacked my dog several times," said neighbor John O'Gorman.

Winthrop dog attack
Bosco was attacked by another dog in Winthrop (WBZ-TV)

The O'Gorman's mini-Doberman was the latest victim – with his owner's hand also taking a bite – as he tried unsuccessfully to stop the attackers from ripping into "Bosco".

"He was bleeding from his chest, mainly," said Doreen O'Gorman. "I got blood all over my coat."

The Vet bill topped $1300.

Several neighbors say they simply won't walk their dogs down Myrtle Avenue anymore, insisting it's not safe.

The Winthrop Police Chief is among them. "I tried to get in the middle of the two dogs," said Chief Terence Delehanty, "to defend my dog."

Yes, "Cora" even went after the chief's rescue dog.

"It was a very traumatic experience for my wife and my dog," said Chief Delehanty.

Jeffrey Clemens
Jeffrey Clemens (WBZ-TV)

In most instances, the targeted dog has not been hurt. But neighbors forced a hearing Monday night, where owner Jeffrey Clemens paid off the latest victim's vet bill – and offered an apology.

"Me and my whole family feel terribly about what has happened," Clemens testified at the hearing.

But neighbors want "Cora" declared a "danger" or a "nuisance" – which could mean anything from mandatory restraints to euthanasia.

"There's certainly something that needs to be done," said Chief Delehanty as he wrapped up his testimony.

The Chief has recused himself from any role in deciding the matter.

"I just don't want to see any other dog get hurt," said neighbor Doreen O'Gorman. "Lately, I've just been putting my dog in the car and taking him somewhere else for his walk."

Indeed, several neighbors told us they didn't want "Cora" put to sleep – they just want some guarantee she won't attack again.

Owner Clemens has already bought a harness and muzzle.

"I'm a responsible dog owner," Clemens said. "I guess I've just got to step it up a little bit."

The assistant town manager in Winthrop says he will render a ruling by Wednesday.


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