Pathetic British police again

Thirty police officers, an arsenal of guns and a lion expert... all to catch two dangerous dogs. Dogs must not be shot, apparently. But they killed them all the same

More than 30 police officers in riot gear surround a suburban house. Some are carrying rifles. But this was not a deadly stand-off with an armed gang or a lone gunman. Instead the huge police operation was aimed at two dogs. It went on for 30 hours and is estimated to have cost £30,000.

It only ended when a vet more used to tranquillising lions finally went into the house with two officers and subdued the dogs. They were later put down.

The animals had turned on a teenage friend of their owner while he was looking after them. Daniel Boardman, 19, was badly bitten on the legs, arms and bottom but somehow managed to dial 999.

Two armed officers arrived to find Mr Boardman being pulled in opposite directions by each dog. They broke down the door and shot the dogs with Taser stun guns to free him and drag him to safety.

But then, because of the danger they posed, the dogs were left in the boarded-up house in Rishton, Blackburn, for 24 hours with a guard outside.

The next morning, police in riot gear, armed officers, the RSPCA, and a zoo vet arrived. The team began trying to lure the dogs out of the open back door into the rear yard. The dogs were called by their names – Coco and Dekker – whistled for and, at one point, food was thrown into the yard.

Perhaps the dogs had some idea what was waiting for them if they did emerge – two marksmen on ladders – so the siege dragged on and shifts changed. Finally an officer climbed a ladder and banged on an upstairs bedroom window to attract the dogs’ attention.

While they were in the bedroom, officers in padded ‘dog suits’ entered the house and shut them in. A panel in the bedroom door was removed and the vet shot each animals with a tranquilliser dart. They were then both given a lethal injection and their bodies finally brought out on Tuesday – 30 hours after the incident began.

Mr Boardman has been left with what police have described as ‘life-changing’ injuries which will require major surgery.

The dogs’ owner, Mark Rowland, 24, from Accrington, was arrested on suspicion of possessing a banned dog and has been bailed pending further inquires. Last night he insisted: ‘They are not dangerous dogs, they are bull mastiffs. They are insured, registered and have never fought in their life. This has just been an accident.’

Mr Rowland said he had visited his friend in hospital and added: ‘He told me the dogs were fighting and he’s gone to pull them apart.’


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