By Luke Brantley
GUIN — Residents gathered at the Guin City Council’s regular meeting on Thursday, Oct. 19, to bring a recent dog attack, and the related issues, to the council’s attention.
Sunset Manor Administrator Lance Junkin prepared a statement and read it to the council during the meeting. Other residents of Guin also attended, along with County Commissioner Larry Akers.
Junkin began by explaining what happened, and why he said something needs to be done as soon as possible.
“On Monday, Oct. 16, a six-year-old girl was attacked on her front porch,” Junkin said. “She was transferred to Children’s Hospital where she underwent reconstructive surgery. The dog bit her upper and lower lip. The doctors said there was nothing they could do with her lower lip.
“She is now recuperating at home. She still has a lengthy recovery both physically and mentally. The initial shock and trauma are still evident. It is unknown what type of lifelong effect this event will have for this little girl.”
Junkin said while the Guin Police Department has been on the case, this is not the first time something like this has happened.
Junkin alleged the dog that bit the young girl bit a two-year old last September. He also recounted the time a Sunset Manor resident was bitten and had to be transported to the emergency room.
“During the last three weeks, I have lost count of the times I have personally run off dogs from Sunset Manor’s property,” he continued. “My daughter and maintenance director have also run off dogs several times. The most at one time were eight.”
Junkin said he has contacted the Marion County Humane Society but was told there wasn’t much they could do due to Guin’s lack of any sort of leash law.
Police Chief Daryl Spencer explained that currently, nuisance dogs are handled on a complaint basis. If someone feels threatened by a dog, they can file a complaint.
After the complaint is received, the police will contact the owner, who will have a certain amount of time to comply. If they don’t comply, their dog will be taken. The owner can retrieve the animal for a fee, or else it will be destroyed.
Spencer said that five out of six recipients of these complaints have complied. One person was arrested for failing to comply.
“It has been said that unfortunately nothing will be done until something tragic happens,” Junkin’s statement concluded. “That is what brings me here tonight.”
Junkin suggested a collar law, which would make it so that a dog without a collar is considered fair game for whoever is authorized to catch them, and that owners of dogs would be easier to identify if their animal becomes a problem.
See complete story in the Journal Record.