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Man whose dog bit cyclist and “pulled her off bike” handed suspended sentence and ordered to pay almost £2,000

A destruction order was also placed on the German Shephard, who had previously attacked a person, though its owner says he will launch an appeal

A man whose dog attacked a passing female cyclist, biting her leg and pulling her to the ground, has been handed a three-month suspended prison sentence, while a destruction order has been placed upon the German Shepherd.

The cyclist was riding in the Glencraig Manor area of Antrim in September 2022 when Jaroslan Bednarek’s dog attacked her, pulling her from her bike and leaving her with “considerable injuries” which required medical treatment, Belfast Live reports.

The Alsatian, named Roxter, had attacked another person three years before biting the cyclist, an incident which meant that Bednarek was under court orders to ensure his pet was fitted with a muzzle and kept on a lead at all times in public places.

Following last year’s attack, which prompted an investigation by Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council, Bednarek was charged under the Dogs (Northern Ireland) Order 1983 as the owner of a dog which attacked a person and for the contravention of control conditions already attached to the licence of a dog.

> Cyclist bitten by dog… and then abused by owner

He pleaded guilty to both charges at Antrim Magistrates’ Court in June, and last week was sentenced to a three-month custodial sentence, suspended for two years.

Bednarek was also fined £500 and ordered to pay £1,000 in compensation to the injured cyclist, along with legal costs of £322.

The judge also made an automatic destruction order concerning the German Shepherd.

However, the dog owner has indicated his intention to appeal the sentence, and the destruction order has been suspended pending the outcome of the appeal.

Following the sentencing, Antrim and Newtownabbey’s Mayor Mark Cooper said: “The Council places a strong emphasis in the investigation of all offences under dog control legislation. Incidents involving attacks on people and animals are investigated rigorously and formal action, such as prosecution, is taken, as demonstrated in this particular case.”

> Teenage cyclist left with puncture wounds after bite from pet Alsatian

The suspended sentence and relatively hefty fine – a result of the owner and dog’s past misdemeanours – stands in stark contrast to previous punishments handed out following similar incidents involving Alsatians and cyclists.

Last December, we reported that the owner of a German Shepherd who left a teenage cyclist with puncture wounds in Derbyshire was fined £140 and ordered to pay £200 compensation, a £34 victim surcharge, and £85 court costs after the attack.

Owner Patricia Williamson, who told the court that her dog suffers “anxiety” around cyclists having been hit by someone riding a bike as a puppy, was “apologetic straightaway” and “put the dog back under control” after it bit a 14-year-old cyclist in the leg.

Main image for illustration purposes only.

Ryan joined road.cc in December 2021 and since then has kept the site’s readers and listeners informed and enthralled (well at least occasionally) on news, the live blog, and the road.cc Podcast. After boarding a wrong bus at the world championships and ruining a good pair of jeans at the cyclocross, he now serves as road.cc’s senior news writer. Before his foray into cycling journalism, he wallowed in the equally pitiless world of academia, where he wrote a book about Victorian politics and droned on about cycling and bikes to classes of bored students (while taking every chance he could get to talk about cycling in print or on the radio). He can be found riding his bike very slowly around the narrow, scenic country lanes of Co. Down.

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35 comments

Avatar
Left_is_for_Losers | 7 months ago
3 likes

I was cruising in town recently, I'd done an effort so just recovering, but a massive dog came up barking and jumping at the bike - not being a big fan of them, I looked for the owner who was shouting at the dog, but feeling pretty helpless, I just sprinted off. The dog however, chased me for a while - I could only hear the owner as I went off saying, "don't just ride away then" as if I was meant to stop, sort out their dog and let it jump around at me...what a moron

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BIRMINGHAMisaDUMP | 7 months ago
3 likes

It's a shame the same 'automatic destruction' order isn't applied to drivers who hit a vunerable road user. The first time they get a telling off, but the second time . . . . . 

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Stephankernow | 7 months ago
19 likes

As a shepherd i have to deal with out of control dogs 6 dead ewes last year.
Horrific injuries dogs totally out of control owned by people who shouldn't be allowed to keep dogs.
If you want to complain about the behaviour of your dogs or your children if 95% of the time you look in the mirror you will see the fool responsible staring you back in the face.
I hope tge cyclist concerned is ok now a frightening experience.

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OldRidgeback | 7 months ago
10 likes

If the owner knew the dog had issues around cyclists, muzzling would've been appropriate and would've prevented the incident. There are trainers who can help dogs that are reactive. I feel sorry for the victims, the woman attacked as well as the dog. The dog owner shouldn't be allowed to have dogs.

My dog is fine around cyclists since he's surrounded by bikes at home and used to his favourite humans being on two wheels (as well as skateboards). I know some dogs that are reactive to cyclists, including one that is good pals with my dog. When this other dog sees me on my bike he reacts as he does with any other cyclist. When I get off the bike, he then realises it's me and will happily lick my hand and accepts a scratch behind the ear. If I get back on the bike, he gets reactive again. 

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Secret_squirrel | 7 months ago
18 likes

An animal about to be destroyed because it was failed by its owner.

He should be banned for life from keeping pets.

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essexian replied to Secret_squirrel | 7 months ago
2 likes

As poor pet ownership is likely to be linked to poor parenting standards, I would also suggest we take their children into care. 

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David9694 replied to Secret_squirrel | 7 months ago
1 like

Blind Westcountry dog needs adopting from animal shelter

Lola is just one of 12 dogs at Cheltenham Animal Shelter looking for their forever home.

"A blind dog living in a Westcountry animal shelter needs to find a forever home. Lola, an eight-year-old Shar Pei, was sadly mistreated.

The neglect was so bad that Lola went blind - and lost her eyes as a result. Lola was taken in by the Cheltenham Animal Shelter, and now needs to find an extra special home."

I was going to quip Lola, 8  "ideal companion for Range Rover owners"* but failed by her owner and the grotesque practices of dog breeding covers it better. I don't especially like dogs, but this sort of bollocks really grinds my gears. Still never mind, a grown-up will pick up the pieces.

* why I need my Range Rover 

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ktache replied to David9694 | 7 months ago
2 likes

I once encountered a blind dog being walked down the horseshoe bridge, where the Kennet meets the Thames, each step down it would wave it's front paw around until it hit the next step down. 

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chrisonabike replied to ktache | 7 months ago
1 like

ktache wrote:

I once encountered a blind dog being walked...

Presumably being walked by the Guides?

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David9694 replied to chrisonabike | 7 months ago
1 like

How does he smell? 

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chrisonabike replied to David9694 | 7 months ago
1 like

Dunno, but after being rescued from a former life as an experimental Beagle he's now a little husky.

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HoarseMann | 7 months ago
11 likes

Got chased by one a few months ago. All bark and no bite thankfully, but not nice all the same. I did go back and give the owner an earful when I'd seen they had the dog back under control.

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David9694 replied to HoarseMann | 7 months ago
12 likes

"He's only playing"

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perce replied to David9694 | 7 months ago
7 likes

I get that a lot when out walking our dog. Whenever we see a dog we don't know I put her on the lead. Time and time again a dog will come bounding up and harass our dog. When the owner finally catches up they say '' it's ok, he's really friendly''. I don't care how friendly it is, my dog isn't keen on other dogs and shouldn't have to put up with it. So called professional dog walkers are the worst - walking up to six dogs round here is the norm. How can you possibly be in control of six dogs?

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IanMSpencer replied to perce | 7 months ago
4 likes

In future, if I hear that, I think I'll try and remember to say "BUT I'M NOT!"

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ROOTminus1 replied to IanMSpencer | 7 months ago
2 likes

I love dogs, I may think twice, but won't ever hesitate for a 3rd moment about kicking a dog if it's necessary for the protection of myself, my dog, or another human.
If you love your pet, you control it or be prepared to face the consequences for yourself and the animal.

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giff77 replied to ROOTminus1 | 7 months ago
4 likes

Richard Ballantine gave some interesting advice on dealing with chasing dogs involving a pump....

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IanMSpencer replied to David9694 | 7 months ago
4 likes

Wow betide you if you complain on your local FaceFriends about dogs running around and jumping up. "Why do you hate dogs?"

My most embarrassing moment was when I was being whisperer expert with Mrs S. "Don't flap around, just keep your hands still by your side."... "Yap! Yap! Nip" ... yes, she got bitten, followed by the inevitable "He's friendly." "It just bit my wife." "Oh, never done that before." Scuttles off guiltily, dog still running around dementedly.

I now mutter loudly around any dog owners not controlling their dogs (being the British way of dealing with these things - I need to be more German)..

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David9694 replied to IanMSpencer | 7 months ago
3 likes

Out-of-control dogs in the New Forest worsening, says horse rider who no longer feels safe after three worrying incidents in two weeks

https://www.advertiserandtimes.co.uk/news/horse-rider-stopping-after-dog...

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perce replied to David9694 | 7 months ago
1 like

Had something slightly different here the other day. Walking on a local bridle path we usually see a black lab on our walk and it's always ok but this day it kept stopping and it's owner was having to coax it along. Turns out a horse and rider went galloping past at full pelt just missing the dog. Dog bolted and the owner had only just been able to get it back. No apology from the rider. 

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perce replied to IanMSpencer | 7 months ago
3 likes

When we first moved to where we live now I took the dog for a walk on the local common, kept her on the lead - nice day, kids playing, plenty of people around. Been walking for a while, some bloke passing said, '' excuse me, why is your dog on a lead?''. I politely explained that there were kids around, people having picnics etc. Not sure why he thought it was any of his business anyway. 

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Hirsute | 7 months ago
12 likes

"Owner Patricia Williamson, who told the court that her dog suffers “anxiety” around cyclists having been hit by someone riding a bike as a puppy"

 

Keep the bloody thing on a leash and muzzled then.

Oh, you didn't bother despite the court order.

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Secret_squirrel replied to Hirsute | 7 months ago
2 likes

Hirsute wrote:

Keep the bloody thing on a leash and muzzled then.

Oh, you didn't bother despite the court order.

Different dog and owner - not under a court order.

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Hirsute replied to Secret_squirrel | 7 months ago
0 likes

Eh ? The person mentioned and their dog is Bednarek.

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ErnieC replied to Hirsute | 7 months ago
3 likes

Hirsute wrote:

"Owner Patricia Williamson, who told the court that her dog suffers “anxiety” around cyclists having been hit by someone riding a bike as a puppy"

 

Keep the bloody thing on a leash and muzzled then.

Oh, you didn't bother despite the court order.

And I suffer anxiety arouns dogs having been bitten more than ince by dogs off lead

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mattw | 7 months ago
11 likes

Why was the dog out of close control anyway? It's a legal requirement is it not on Public Higwhays?

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eburtthebike replied to mattw | 7 months ago
11 likes

mattw wrote:

Why was the dog out of close control anyway? It's a legal requirement is it not on Public Higwhays?

Yes, but sadly most dog owners couldn't give a flying flamingo for the law, preferring to blame their victims.  What does that remind me of?

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giff77 replied to eburtthebike | 7 months ago
6 likes

I think the majority of owners are unaware of laws regarding their dogs and public spaces. 

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eburtthebike replied to giff77 | 7 months ago
4 likes

giff77 wrote:

I think the majority of owners are unaware of laws regarding their dogs and public spaces. 

Why are they ignorant?  If you own something, you should know the law regarding it.  Some drivers know some of the road laws for instance.

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giff77 replied to eburtthebike | 7 months ago
8 likes

You would think wouldn't you. Except the numbers I see with dogs on extendable leads or off lead on shared use and open parks is unreal. As much as I don't mind dogs I really don't appreciate loose ones coming up and sniffing round you while you're having a picnic. At least motorists have to learn some laws pre-licensing even if they do forget a lot of them. 

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