Winston The Bulldog Is Going Home

Owner Will Make Sure Dog Who Attacked Patrol Car Doesn't Get Out Again

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Winston the Bulldog who attacked a city patrol car is going home.

A deal was worked out in City Court on Thursday morning in which the Emerling family will keep Winston at their Mann Welding Company on Workman Road near Rossville Boulevard.

Michael Emerling said, "We'll make sure that Winston doesn't get out. We will use a chain on the fence rather than a nylon cord."

The case in which McKamey Animal Trust had asked that Winston be declared a potentially dangerous dog was passed for six months on Winston's "good behavior."

But the case will be treated as if he had been declared a potentially dangerous dog. The owners will have to take Winston through two obedience classes.

The family was set to pick up Winston this afternoon.

Karen Walsh, McKamey Center executive director, said she was glad the case has this resolution and that the owners had taken responsibility for Winston.

She said, "Winston was reserved when he first got to the center. But he has settled down and been playing around."

Judge Sherry Paty cautioned the Emerlings that there cannot be a repeat incident like the one that gained worldwide publicity.

She said it would have been devastating had the attack been on a person - especially a child.

The judge said, "I don't even want the remote possibility of that happening."

In the incident, an officer was running radar on Workman Road when Winston charged out through the gate and began shaking the patrol car. Winston munched on the tires and ate the front bumper.

He also attacked other patrol cars that were called in as backup.

Officers tried to pepper spray Winston, then to tase him, but nothing calmed him down.

Michael Emerling said the family is grateful that the officers did not shoot Winston. He said, "In other areas near here, police have shot dogs for much less."

Mr. Emerling said Winston showed up as a stray at the welding business when he was about two months old in October 2008.

He said he had never showed such aggressiveness. He said, "We had no idea. If we had, we would have taken steps to make sure he could not have gotten out."

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