Child needed stitches after Walsall dog bite, jury told

A husband and wife were in charge of a dog which sunk its teeth into a young girl’s head in Walsall and left her needing stitches, a court heard.

Jasvinder Gill, aged 61, and Nirmal Singh, 60, were allegedly in charge of their son’s Japanese Akita when it escaped from their garden in Lichfield Road, Rushall, and attacked the girl, a jury at Wolverhampton Crown Court heard yesterday.

Prosecutor Mr John Evans said it happened moments after the youngster, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had been waving to her grandmother on May 5 last year.

The couple both deny being in charge of the dog when it attacked the girl and allowing the animal to enter a place where it was not permitted.

Opening the case against them, Mr Evans said the youngster suffered cuts to her scalp during the attack and needed hospital treatment.

He told the jury the dog had got out of the couple’s garden and grabbed the girl by the head ‘sinking its teeth in enough to do some damage’.

He said the girl’s father had attempted and finally succeeded to get the dog off his daughter.

Mr Evans said: “There are pictures of her wounds, scalp lacerations to her head.

“The police started an investigation.

“In essence, it is both their cases that it is not their dog. They were not aware of the dog biting the child.”

He said it was not suggested that the pair had owned the dog but that they were in charge of the animal at the time it attacked the girl.

Mr Evans said: “If you are in charge of a dog you assume the same responsibility as the owner.”

A video-recorded police interview with the youngster was shown to the jury.

The footage showed her wearing a checked shirt, jacket and jeans and speaking to an officer at Bloxwich police station.

Talking about the attack, she said: “The dog jumped up and then got my head.

“My dad saw me and then he got the dog off me.”

When asked how it felt, she said it had ‘really hurt’ and that it had made her feel ‘really scared’.

She said: “I was just crying and everybody heard me scream.”

She said she went to hospital to have stitches and that her father had also been injured.

The trial continues.