State prosecutors put on hold the police’s push to put down a dog which attacked and severely injured an 8-year-old boy in a case that sparked public outcry over the weekend, local reports said Sunday. They cited a lack of evidence to prove the dog was dangerous.
According to reports, the disposal process of the mixed breed dog, which mauled the neck and arms of an elementary school student at an apartment complex in Ulsan on July 11, has been suspended following the prosecution’s directive.
With CCTV footage showing how the boy was chased down and mauled by the animal widely circulated on social media, the case has sparked calls for stricter measures against dog attacks, with many demanding the dog be put down immediately.
The police, mindful of public sentiment, took steps for euthanasia of the dog after its owner agreed to give up his rights.
The current law defines animals as objects. Euthanasia of a dog is tantamount to the disposal of a confiscated object.
After the Ulsan Ulju Police Station sought an approval from the prosecution to dispose of the animal on Friday, the prosecution rejected the request, saying additional evidence is needed to justify the confiscation of the dog, such as the dog posing potential harm to a person’s health and property.
Accordingly, the police plan to collect relevant information and file the case for review to the prosecutor’s office again.
According to the footage, the dog attacked the boy for some three minutes until a delivery man wielded a cart to scare it away. The victim has undergone suture surgery on his neck, arms and legs and is hospitalized.
The dog owner, a man in his 70s who lives near the apartment where the accident occurred, is currently under investigation on charges of negligence. The dog was found to have been released from its leash and fled at dawn on the day of the accident.
By Park Han-na (firstname.lastname@example.org