For the second time in four months, pit bulls running at large attacked and killed a Newton resident's pet in an unprovoked attack.
Newton Police were called to the 300 block of South Fourth Avenue West at 7:28 p.m. Friday on a report that three pit bulls had just attacked and killed a small dog. Police met with the owner of the deceased dog who said that the three pit bulls attacked and killed her pet poodle in an unprovoked attack and bit her when she tried to stop them from attacking a second dog. The second dog was injured.
Newton Police Lt. Wayne Winchell said in a news release this morning that the owners of the dogs were identified as residents of the southwest Newton neighborhood.
Jacob Shepard, 23, of 408 W. 4th St. S. was charged with two counts of allowing a dog to run at-large. Jessica Shepard, 21, of 408 W. 4th St. S. was charged with allowing a dog to run at-large.
The pit bulls were taken to the Jasper County Animal Rescue League for a 14-day quarantine period pending further investigation by Newton Police.
In late September, the owner of two pit bulls was charged after his animals mauled a neighbor's cat to death while running at large in an eastside Newton neighborhood.
Chad Berry was ordered to pay a civil fine of $100 on an unlicensed dog count and a total of $2,200 in civil penalties for four third offense citations for allowing the dogs to run at-large. In addition, he is required to pay court costs of $85 on each citation. Online court records show that no payments have been received.
In addition to the recent attacks by pit bulls on Newton residents' pets, a Newton woman was seriously injured after being attacked by three pit bulls while walking in southwest Newton in late August 2010.
Following the attack on the cat last fall, the Newton City Council asked city staff to put together an ordinance that toughens Newton's vicious dog ordinance but said it did not want to target pit bulls specifically.