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Akita appeal case adjourned

PUBLISHED: 15:51 01 December 2009 | UPDATED: 11:04 11 August 2010

A WOMAN whose large Japanese Akita dog sank its fangs into a Shih Tzu and tossed the tiny pooch into the air is to appeal against her jail sentence.

Kayleigh Steadman, 23, was jailed for 10 weeks by magistrates last month after admitting causing unnecessa

A WOMAN whose large Japanese Akita dog sank its fangs into a Shih Tzu and tossed the tiny pooch into the air is to appeal against her jail sentence.

Kayleigh Steadman, 23, was jailed for 10 weeks by magistrates last month after admitting causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal.

Steadman's pet Akita Vinnie had escaped through Steadman's broken fence and darted on to nearby Barking Park in Essex where he mauled tiny Shih Tzu Chubby.

She had ignored an earlier RSPCA warning to secure her garden after Vinnie broke free to attack a black Labrador by breaking free.

Steadman now claims the jail sentence was 'manifestly excessive'.

Steadman, who is on bail pending the outcome of her appeal, failed to appear for the short hearing at Snaresbrook Crown Court due to 'anxiety and stress'.

Judge John Hand QC agreed 'with some hesitation' to adjourn the case until January 27 after he was handed a medical certificate confirming Steadman's condition.

Vinnie struck on January 30 this year and attacked Chubby 'without warning' after escaping from Steadman's Park Avenue home.

Steadman gave chase and repeatedly screamed in vain for Vinnie to release Chubby.

A brave bystander was forced to restrain Vinnie in a head-lock to save the Shih Tzu.

Chubby later underwent an operation to treat a number of wounds but has fortunately made a good recovery, according to the RSPCA.

Insp Andrea Middleton had issued Steadman with a verbal warning in November last year after Vinnie's assault on the Labrador.

Steadman claimed she had made several attempts to contact Barking and Dagenham Council in a bid to get the fence repaired.

She initially denied responsibility for Vinnie's attack on Chubby and was due to stand trial on November 23 at Barking Magistrates' Court.

But Steadman then admitted the charge.

The JPs jailed Steadman and also disqualified her from owning pets for 15 years.

Steadman, of Park Avenue, Barking, has admitted causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal but has appealed against the 10 week jail sentence.


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