In the UK, a mother and a father will stand trial after their newborn baby was beaten to death by the jealous family dog.
Stephen Joynes, 36, and Abigail Ellis, 28, from Doncaster are charged with being responsible for a dog dangerously out of control causing injury resulting in death.
Elon Jase Ellis-Joynes was only 12 days old when he was attacked by a Chow Chow-cross called Teddy at his home in Welfare Road, Woodlands on 13 September 2020.
The uncle of the newborn said the pet may have been “jealous” when he attacked and killed the 12-day-old baby. Elon was in his Moses basket on Sunday afternoon when the family dog, Teddy, escaped from a garden pen and attacked him.
Teddy grabbed the baby, who weighed less than 7lb, in its jaws, the relative said. Abigail’s brother said that the mom was upstairs and that the dog’s wooden pen might not have been high enough.
Elon, who was born on September 1, 2020, was rushed to hospital but sadly he couldn’t be saved due to the severity of his injuries.
“On arrival at the property, emergency services discovered the baby boy had been bitten by a dog and suffered serious injuries,” a South Yorkshire Police spokesperson told The Sun.
The baby’s devastated uncle feared that the usually friendly Chow Chow-cross was “jealous” or thought Elon was a toy when he entered the house and attacked the child.
He said Teddy was a big softie and all the kids and adults would cuddle the animal.
“You just wouldn’t expect it to do anything like that,” the uncle said.
Both parents have denied owning or being in charge of a dog dangerously out of control causing injury resulting in death when they appeared before Sheffield Crown Court.
The pair only spoke to confirm their dates of birth and to enter their pleas before the Recorder of Sheffield, Judge Jeremy Richardson QC.
They were granted unconditional bail, and a trial that was expected to last five days has been set for next July. The court also heard that the dog had since been exterminated.
“You are required by law to furnish the court and prosecution with a defense statement,” Judge Richardson QC told the parents.
“This is not a mere formality; it is a very important document,” the judge continued. ” Any default in receiving it could, in certain circumstances, be held against you. It is really important that you cooperate with your defense lawyers with the production of this document. You have to be at the court for your trial.”
“If you do not attend, the trial will – as likely as not – go ahead without you and you could be unrepresented,” he added. “You are both released on unconditional bail.”
An inquest opening into Elon’s death, held last year, heard he was still alive when his distraught mother desperately called an ambulance.
Doncaster coroner’s court heard that she told the 999 call handler that Elon was breathing, but was “really poorly” and was “bleeding from his leg or his stomach”.
Floral tributes were left at the family’s mid-terrace house as well-wishers and neighbors offered their support for the family.
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