On December 23rd 2010, Alex Blackburn-Smiths's Neopolitan Mastiff, named DB0, attacked and killed his housemate Barbara Williams. Last week at Croydon Crown Court Mr Blackburn-Smith was ordered to pay costs of £3,340and sentenced to 150 hours community service. He had previously pleaded guilty to failing to ensure the dog's welfare by keeping the 1.24m dog in a 106 cm cage. He had also previously pleaded guilty to owning a pitbull terrier, DB0's daughter, which was subsequently put down. While pit bull terriers are illegal under the Dangerous Dogs Act Mastiffs are not covered and so police and council can only act once the dog has attacked or exhibited threatening behaviour. Mrs Williams, who was 58 at the time, was doing the washing up when DB0 broke free from his cage and attacked her. Mrs Williams suffered a severe baemorrage to the head and neck and died at the scene. DB0 was shot dead by police after they failed to restrain him using riot shields.
Dog owner avoids jail following fatal attack