Owner of Rottweilers cited after attack in Pupukea

(image: Kellie King)
(image: Kellie King)
(image: Kellie King)
(image: Kellie King)
(image: Hawaii News Now)
(image: Hawaii News Now)

PUPUKEA, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Hawaiian Humane Society cited the owner of two Rottweilers in Pupukea for two counts of dangerous dogs after an alleged attack on a woman and a pet Chihuahua last month.

Deidre Erickson said she was walking her neighbor's pet Chihuahua when her other neighbor's Rottweilers got loose. She described a horrific attack that left her punctured, sprained, and needing surgery.

Jimmie, a 12-pound Chihuahua mix, needed more than 100 stitches to survive.

The attorney for the Rottweilers' owner said his client out of town when the incident happened, but the owner has a caretaker for her pets.

"We've heard different stories as to what happened, we've heard that Erickson was not injured as a result of this allegation," said Bill Harrison.

Harrison said his client and Erickson have a history of legal issues between each other and they are still investigating the facts of the case.

"My understanding is that these dogs were not off a leash, out on the street. They may somehow have gotten through the gate, I don't know. Someone might have opened the gate to allow the dogs to come out, we're still looking into that," Harrison said.

The Humane Society said the Rottweilers can stay on the property, but they must be secured.

Removal of pet is difficult, according to the Humane Society. They say there are only two areas of law that cover dog bites. One is a "nuisance" or a minor dog bite and there is no provision under the law to take a dog for that.  The other deals with dangerous dogs. However, even if a dog is involved in a serious attack, the Humane Society says it could be returned to its owner if it is contained. In most cases, he Humane Society says the owner has the right to keep their animal, even after an attack.

Attorney Victor Bakke is not involved with this case but has dealt with other dangerous dog incidents in the past. He says it's a case-by-case basis.

"You'll almost never see a charge filed. And if it is, it'll be dropped if there's not a history of at least one prior attack," said Bakke.

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