I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Discuss Breed Specific Legislation and local county laws on pit bull ownership.
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snikles
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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby snikles » Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:58 pm

Amie wrote:They still aren't being clear on what a "pit bull" is, though, nor how to determine if it's "pure bred" or not.


Yeah. I don't know how to read the decision now. Since technically there isn't a pure breed called a "pit bull." The closest thing would be the American Pit Bull Terrier. The legislature really needs to fix this whole thing.

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I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby AllisonPitbullLvr » Wed Aug 22, 2012 1:07 pm

Amie wrote:They still aren't being clear on what a "pit bull" is, though, nor how to determine if it's "pure bred" or not.


Welcome to the nightmare that is Ontario's "substantially similar" clause.

If it weren't for those two words in the legislation, I wouldn't have to muzzle Buddy, 1500 dogs wouldn't have been euthanized and I wouldn't be sending dogs to safety out of province.

It's damn ridiculous. Laws cannot be subjective.

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Amie » Thu Aug 23, 2012 4:26 pm

http://www.wbaltv.com/news/maryland/bal ... g.facebook
500 pit bulls likely to be surrendered to the high kill city shelter in the next few days.

From Maryland Animal Law Center:
We will represent Co-op owners at Armistead Gardens and are reaching out to the folks who live there to be in touch. Please contact us so we can begin working on this immediately

PO Box 1263, Bowie, Maryland 20718
1 (240) 232-6360
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Maryland ... 2046522980

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby heather » Tue Aug 28, 2012 8:57 pm

Important information for Maryland dog owners. Please share with dog owners who may be affected by the Maryland Court of Appeals' ruling, and let them know they do have options and many people working to protect their rights.

http://blessthebullys.wordpress.com/201 ... og-owners/

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby heather » Sat Sep 01, 2012 8:47 pm

Video article only on the first casualties of the Maryland Court of Appeals ruling. Keep in mind the ruling HAS NOT taken effect yet.

Residents in Armistead Gardens have received a notice that they must "get rid of" their "pit bulls." According to the report, there is estimated to be 500 pit bulls in Armistead Gardens.


Link to video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M_g5-Wu5Mhg



Pit bull ruling outrages East Baltimore residents

Published on Aug 22, 2012 by wbal

An immediate ban on pit bulls has outraged residents of an East Baltimore community. Residents received a letter evicting their dogs and it has to do a ruling on pit bulls by the Maryland Court of Appeals.

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Amie » Wed Sep 05, 2012 5:44 am


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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby heather » Wed Sep 19, 2012 8:20 am

Maryland pit bull ruling is challenged in federal court

Suit seeks to overturn ruling on constitutional grounds and save residents at Armistead Gardens from eviction


By Ian Duncan, The Baltimore Sun
7:34 p.m. EDT, September 12, 2012
A resident at the low-income Armistead Gardens housing development is suing the state in federal court, asking judges to strike down a recent court ruling that pit bulls are inherently dangerous.

In a complaint filed Wednesday, lawyers for Joseph Weigel argue that he would have to move out of his home at the East Baltimore housing complex if he refuses to give up his dog.

In August, the Maryland Court of Appeals ruled that purebred pit bulls are "inherently dangerous" and that landlords could potentially be strictly liable if a pit bull attacks a person on their property.

After the ruling, Armistead Homes Corp., which manages Armistead Gardens, told residents to get rid of pure and mixed-breed pit bulls or face eviction, according to the suit.
Weigel's suit argues that in the ruling, the appeals court unconstitutionally overrode the property rights of people like Weigel by making them choose between their homes and their pets.

Charles H. Edwards, Weigel's attorney, said that if a restraining order is not issued, Weigel and his dog will be homeless before the end of September. While Weigel is the only resident of the development named in the suit, Edwards said it could apply to as many as 500 dog owners who live there.

"These people are faced with a very hard choice — homelessness or euthanization of their dogs," Edwards said.

Armistead Gardens did not respond to requests for comment on the suit. And the Maryland attorney general's office declined to comment on ongoing litigation.

The original ruling sprang from a 2007 incident in which a young boy was mauled by a pit bull in Towson. When the dog's owner declared bankruptcy, the boy's family took forward a case against the owner's landlord.

In April, the Court of Appeals ruled that both purebred pit bulls and pit bull mixes were inherently dangerous, overturning a previous law that an owner must have known their dog was dangerous in order to be held strictly liable.

Then in August, the appeals court partly walked back the ruling, applying it only to purebred pit bulls. But experts say that might not have changed the effect of the ruling because "pit bull" is not a breed of dog, rather an umbrella term for different breeds.

The General Assembly made an unsuccessful attempt to revise the ruling in the special session, and is expected to try again next year.

Edwards said he knows he has an uphill battle in his challenge.

"It's an incredibly difficult case to win, but you got to do something," he said.

While the court made clear that the ruling was not a ban on pit bulls and that their owners would not have to give up their dogs, Tami Santelli,
Maryland director of the Humane Society of the United States, said its effect on renters could be "more insidious".

Stacey Evans, the chairwoman of the animal law section of the Maryland State Bar Association, believes landlords could be held liable even if they did not know a pit bull was on their property. Animal protection groups are worried that the ruling would lead to tenants abandoning pit bulls in order to stay in their homes.

"Everyone was pretty nervous in April when the case came down," Santelli said.

While the Humane Society estimates the ruling could affect as many as 70,000 dogs in Maryland, Santelli said she had not heard of large numbers of animals being given up to shelters. But she said homeowners and condo associations have contacted the organization to say they are updating policies to ban pit bulls in common areas.


http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/breaki ... 4894.story

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby heather » Wed Oct 17, 2012 8:40 am


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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby heather » Fri Jan 11, 2013 10:20 am

Pit Bull Debate To Resume In Annapolis

Thursday, January 10, 2013
Robert Lang
The Maryland General Assembly this year is expected to resume debate on legislation that would prevent the state from declaring any breed of dog "inherently dangerous."

The issue was raised during the special session in August, in response to a Maryland Court of Appeals decision that gave the "inherently dangerous" label to pit bulls, automatically holding their owner's and their owner's landlords responsible for any injuries the dogs may cause.

Lawmakers could not come to an agreement on a bill in August.

New legislation is expected to be introduced in the next few weeks.

During the summer, a task force took testimony on the issue.

Aileen Gabey, executive director of the Maryland SPCA says lawmakers should also approve a bill that would waive landlords of any liability for injuries or damages caused by dogs owned by their tenants.

Gabey says some animal shelters have seen pit bulls surrendered or abandoned by their owners who are renters because landlords are not banning the dogs from their property.

"We are hearing from concerned pet owners and from concerned landlords. There is no definitive way to define this type of dog. There's a lot of confusion, and unfortunately, the pets are being given up as a result," Gabey told WBAL News.

She says that the Baltimore City Animal Shelter has received 30 pit bulls surrendered by their owners, as a result of the decision. She says the SPCA has received eight pit bulls.

The Court of Appeals decision came in the case of a Baltimore County family who sued a pit bull owner and their landlord after their ten year old son was attacked by a pit bull in 2007.

"I think because pit bulls was the catalyst. I think I'd like to leave it in tact what the court did," Tony Solesky told WBAL News.

The Towson father appeared before the task force last summer, after the attack on his son Dominic.

He believes the Court of Appeals decision was correct in holding pet owners,responsible for dog attacks.

He also believes landlords should be held responsible for the dog attacks of their tenants, just as homeowners are held legally responsible for their pets.

"As homeowners if my dog attacks you or vice versa we're covered. If my child hits you with a baseball bat, it's covered under my homeowner's insurance, but if you purchase a property next door to me, and you're a landlord, your tenant is extended that coverage from me, but I'm not extended that coverage from your tenant," Solesky says.
Dominic Solesky is now 16-years-old, and has fully recovered from his injuries.

He says that while he is sympathetic to the concerns of dog owners, he feels justice was served in the court decision.

"It's upsetting you have ton get rid of your dog, but its also a lot more upsetting if your child gets attacked by a dog," the teen added.


http://www.wbal.com/article/96842/21/te ... -Annapolis

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Amie » Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:11 am

Feeling hopeful... I really like the proposed bill:
http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2013/01/1 ... ll-ruling/

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Amie » Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:03 am


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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby heather » Mon Feb 04, 2013 8:48 pm

The video news footage on the WUSA9 website goes into much more detail than the print article.





Lawmakers Aim to Overturn Ruling That Pit Bulls Are "Inherently Dangerous"

8:56 PM, Jan 30, 2013

Annapolis, Md. (WUSA) -- Maryland Legislators are aiming to finally undo a court ruling declaring pit bulls "inherently dangerous."

A hearing took place on Wednesday on a bill that would shift liability from landlords to owners and their insurers.

In addition, the bill would declare all dogs as potential hazards, regardless of breed. However, the law would allow owners to defend against suits by arguing their pet was provoked or never showed signs of aggression.

http://www.wusa9.com/news/article/24063 ... egislature

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby heather » Tue Feb 19, 2013 1:22 pm

MARYLAND RESIDENTS: Please reach out to your legislators and ask them to support HB78.

In addition, because SB160 has not been voted on yet, please continue to send your polite and respectful letters to the Judicial Proceedings Committee members urging them to support and move SB160 forward. Contact information can be found in the link below.

http://blessthebullys.wordpress.com/201 ... -maryland/





Week Seven: Pit Bull Bills To Get Votes

The House of Delegates this week is expected to debate and vote on a bill that is designed to reverse the impact of a Maryland Court of Appeals ruling that finds pit bulls an "inherently dangerous" breed of dog, and automatically holds their owners and landlords legally responsible for any dog bite.

Floor debate is expected to begin as soon as Tuesday on a bill that increases protections for dog bite victims by creating a presumption that all dog owners should know the pet presented a danger. A dog owner who becomes a court defendant after a bite will have a chance in court to try to prove the dog was not dangerous.

The bill does not define any breed of dog as "inherently dangerous."

A final House vote could come by the end of the week.

http://www.wbal.com/article/97643/3/tem ... -Get-Votes

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Amie » Thu Feb 21, 2013 4:22 pm

Not disappointed right now!

http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2013/02/2 ... dangerous/

One step closer, and it was UNANIMOUS! LOVE that!

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby heather » Thu Feb 21, 2013 7:02 pm

great news!


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