I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Discuss Breed Specific Legislation and local county laws on pit bull ownership.
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heather
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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby heather » Mon Jul 16, 2012 2:04 pm

Some relief for pit bull owners, landlords

Attorney general’s office says insurance firm’s motion puts court ruling on hold


Two Maryland lawmakers say an opinion by the attorney general’s office issued Monday should give pit bull owners and their landlords temporary relief, which buys the legislature time to pass a new law to address issues raised in a recent Court of Appeals ruling.

At a Wednesday morning news conference, Del. Heather Mizeur (D-Dist. 20) of Takoma Park said a motion by State Farm Insurance asking the Court of Appeals to reconsider its April 26 ruling that pit bulls were “inherently dangerous” puts a stay on the impact of the court’s decision on pet owners and their landlords.

Under the court’s decision, landlords could be held liable if a tenant’s pit bull or pit bull mixed breed attacked an individual or a pet.

In the opinion by the attorney general’s office, issued in response from a request by Mizeur, Assistant Attorney General Kathryn M. Rowe said neither the governor nor the legislature could take any action short of passage of legislation to stay the decision by the court. However, the filing of the motion for reconsideration delays the impact of the decision until the court makes a final ruling.

The state’s high court decision in April prompted numerous calls from supporters and owners of pit bulls asking for changes to the state law, said Del. Michael D. Smigiel (R-Dist. 36) of Chesapeake City.

One woman emailed him this week that her landlord had evicted her because of the court ruling and that she was living in her car with her dogs because she did not want to give them up.

While the attorney general’s opinion does not “unring the bell” for those who already have been evicted or for the dogs put down by shelters because of the court ruling, it should prevent similar action until either the legislature passes a new law or the court issues a final ruling after reconsideration, Smigiel said.

If the legislative task force reaches a solution, the entire legislative body should be able to quickly pass a law to remedy the uncertainty and problems caused by the court’s ruling, Mizeur said.

Such a bill could be considered in a special session, but it is unlikely the General Assembly would convene just on the pit bull issue. However, if expanded gambling is taken up in a special session, the pit bull bill could be introduced and passed in the matter of a day or two, Mizeur said.

http://www.gazette.net/article/20120711 ... te=gazette

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snikles
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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby snikles » Tue Jul 24, 2012 5:43 pm

I don't know how the ruling not being in effect helps landlords. In the underlying case the landlord wasn't protected despite the ruling not even being in existence.

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby bmore_girl » Sat Aug 04, 2012 7:44 pm

rally in annapolis aug. 9th. please see my post in the events section!

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heather
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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby heather » Mon Aug 06, 2012 7:49 pm

Maryland pit bull legislation could be introduced at special session
August 3, 2012

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A Maryland lawmaker says he expects a bill addressing a court ruling that defines pit bulls as "inherently dangerous" will be introduced in this month's special session.


Delegate Curt Anderson, a co-chairman of a task force that has examined the ruling, said Friday that the bill will seek to remove landlord liability for dog bites. Instead, the measure will seek to put liability for bites by any type of dog on their owners.


The Court of Appeals ruling in April makes owners of pit bulls and pit bull mixes liable for dog bites. Critics of the ruling say that singles out pit bulls unfairly.


The special session is scheduled to begin Thursday in Annapolis to focus on gambling expansion in Maryland.


http://www.wjla.com/articles/2012/08/ma ... 78451.html

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Amie » Tue Aug 07, 2012 6:53 am

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryla ... 6139.story
...Includes a pic Me and Posey - this was after about twenty minutes of training that started with her being scared of the hula hoop!

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Amie » Thu Aug 09, 2012 5:16 pm

Today was a Senate hearing on a proposed bill addressing the recent court ruling. The proposal is strict liability for all dogs (basically, dog owners are responsible for their dogs, even at the first bite), which passed 6-3. House hearing is next!

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heather
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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby heather » Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:42 am

Maryland measure defangs pit bull ruling

Liability for bites not specific to breed under new bill


ANNAPOLIS — A bill that holds dog owners responsible for attacks by their pets, regardless of breed, is headed to the Maryland state Senate floor Friday.

Members of the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee moved the bill to the full Senate on a 7-2 vote. The bill was proposed in response to a Court of Appeals ruling declaring pit bulls “inherently dangerous.”

Stemming from a 2007 pit bull attack on then-10-year-old Dominic Solesky, the ruling also extended liability for pit bull attacks to anyone with the right to control the dog’s presence, such as landlords.

The decision brought an outcry from pit bull owners and animal rights organizations, prompting the formation of a government task force to examine the ruling.

Sen. Brian E. Frosh, Montgomery County Democrat and co-chairman of the task force, introduced the bill, which holds all dog owners to the same legal standard. Sen. Jamin B. “Jamie” Raskin, Montgomery County Democrat, and Sen. Lisa A. Gladden, Baltimore Democrat, co-sponsored the bill.

Under the proposed legislation, the first time a person’s dog attacks someone, the owner will face “strict liability” — responsibility for injury even if the owner was not negligent. Landlords will only be held liable if they are determined to be negligent.

“Whether it’s a poodle or a pit bull, the owner is responsible for that,” Mr. Frosh said.

Before the April ruling, a victim of a dog attack filing a lawsuit had to prove the owner knew the dog had a history of violence.
Thirty-five states and Washington, D.C., already enforce strict liability for dog attacks.

Landlords, dog owners, animal rights activists and members of the pet industry testified in favor of the bill and urged the committee to pass it during the special session.

“There’s a really critical need to address these issues,” said Tami Santelli, state director of the Humane Society of the United States.

Making landlords liable for the actions of a tenant’s dog will force renters to choose between their pet and their home, Ms. Santelli said.

Dominic’s father, Anthony Solesky, and lawyer Kevin Dunne testified against the bill, saying that landlords must still be held responsible. They did not oppose extending strict liability for owners to all breeds of dogs.

In his written testimony, Mr. Dunne said that by removing landlords’ liability, “those who could actually be in a position to prevent these attacks and to pay the victim’s medical bills will be out of the picture.”

When the Soleskys sued the owner of the pit bull that attacked Dominic, the owner filed for bankruptcy and was able to avoid liability.
The bill does not ensure victims will be compensated, said Mr. Dunne.

Mr. Frosh said that not everyone is 100 percent happy with the measure, but he is confident he will get a bill out of the Senate.

“We cleared a big hurdle today,” he said.

An hour before the hearing, more than 60 pit bull advocates gathered in front of the State House to ask the General Assembly to address the ruling during the special session.

Members of Maryland Votes for Animals, a political action committee, organized the gathering.

Those in attendance wore T-shirts with slogans such as “Stop breed discrimination laws in MD” and “Punish the deed, not the breed.”

Linda Martin from Parkville showed up to defend her four-year-old pit bull Rambo.

“My dog, he’s not dangerous. I’ve never met a pit bull that’s dangerous,” she said.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/201 ... #pagebreak

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby pitminer » Mon Aug 13, 2012 5:28 pm

Hi everyone:

I haven't posted on the forum in probably 5 years or so, but am doing so now with a situation related directly to this forum topic. I am currently exploring being hired in the City of Baltimore Public Schools as a teacher. If hired, I would need to relocate from West Chester, PA, to an area preferably in the City of Baltimore or in the surrounding communities. I've been exploring online about the difficulties of finding ANY renter to rent to someone owning a pit bull type dog in much of MD, despite the recent ruling that was highlighted in this morning's post. Does anyone have any suggestions or information about my chances of finding somewhere to rent with my dog. Cleo is an 11 year old pitbull/lab/am bulldog looking mix that i've owned since she was appx. 4 months old. She is sweet as can be and a gentle old soul. I can't figure out how to include her pic, but she is clearly a pit bull/am bulldog looking mix. All white with a brown patch over one eye and two big brown patches on her body; thick lab type coat; pit bull face, and poor rear angulation 75. lb am bulldog looking body. Nonetheless, I forsee some hurdles in finding housing. Factor in that I would have to find somewhere to live within an appx. 2 week time frame. If I can get more input in another section of the forum, please feel free to redirect me. My input in the search box brought me to this section. Thanks everyone. Please respond on here versus pm'ing to my email as that email is no longer in use.

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Leslie H » Mon Aug 13, 2012 5:34 pm

http://www.pitbullforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=149025
Housing search sticky, I hope it's helpful.

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Ilovethepits » Tue Aug 14, 2012 2:46 pm

pitminer wrote:Hi everyone:

I haven't posted on the forum in probably 5 years or so, but am doing so now with a situation related directly to this forum topic. I am currently exploring being hired in the City of Baltimore Public Schools as a teacher. If hired, I would need to relocate from West Chester, PA, to an area preferably in the City of Baltimore or in the surrounding communities. I've been exploring online about the difficulties of finding ANY renter to rent to someone owning a pit bull type dog in much of MD, despite the recent ruling that was highlighted in this morning's post. Does anyone have any suggestions or information about my chances of finding somewhere to rent with my dog. Cleo is an 11 year old pitbull/lab/am bulldog looking mix that i've owned since she was appx. 4 months old. She is sweet as can be and a gentle old soul. I can't figure out how to include her pic, but she is clearly a pit bull/am bulldog looking mix. All white with a brown patch over one eye and two big brown patches on her body; thick lab type coat; pit bull face, and poor rear angulation 75. lb am bulldog looking body. Nonetheless, I forsee some hurdles in finding housing. Factor in that I would have to find somewhere to live within an appx. 2 week time frame. If I can get more input in another section of the forum, please feel free to redirect me. My input in the search box brought me to this section. Thanks everyone. Please respond on here versus pm'ing to my email as that email is no longer in use.


Not sure if they still own it but forum member BabyReba had a property in Maryland that she was renting out.

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Amie
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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Amie » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:57 am

Another pit bull attack: http://www.abc2news.com/dpp/news/region ... king-child

I can't imagine them overturning anything now.
:po: :po: :po: :po: :po:

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Bully_Love » Thu Aug 16, 2012 7:22 am

Oh God... :( Why do these things always have to happen, well, one period, and at the worst possible times? This has irresponsibility painted all over it. 2 dogs abandoned in a back yard, they both escape. The kid, who sees these two strange, roaming dogs, goes to pet one, who bites (not attacks) the boy. If they use this against passing this new legislation, I'm going to be royally pissed. :po:

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Youaremysuicide
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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Youaremysuicide » Fri Aug 17, 2012 4:56 pm

If that kid was 'mauled' I'm pretty sure he'd have much more than a small bruise on his face. :po:
And the dog was shot FIVE times. Ugh. Don't even get me started about how the article says the dogs are 'blue nosed pitbulls'.

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby snikles » Tue Aug 21, 2012 3:36 pm

Sort of good news. In a surprising move the Maryland Court of Appeals over turned its pit bull decision in part. So the motion for reconsideration was granted in part and denied in part. The part they overturned was including pit bull mixes or crosses in their opinion. So while there is still strict liability for pit bulls, there is not for mixed breeds that might be part pit bull. The Court of Appeals very, very rarely does something like this.

http://www.marylandinjurylawyerblog.com ... _on_p.html

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Re: I am disappointed in the Maryland Courts

Postby Amie » Wed Aug 22, 2012 11:20 am

They still aren't being clear on what a "pit bull" is, though, nor how to determine if it's "pure bred" or not.


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