Woman cleared of dangerous dog charge

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A Hawick woman accused of being in charge of a dog which was dangerously out of control and attacked a young child has walked free following a two-day jury trial at Selkirk Sheriff Court.

Sheriff Kevin Drummond ruled there was no case to answer against 20-year-old Karissa Johnstone of Eildon Road.

It followed a submission by defence lawyer Iain Burke, who said that according to the evidence led during the trial there was no “reasonable apprehension” that an Airedale Terrier under her control would attack the four-year-old.

Under the terms of the Dangerous Dogs Act, Sheriff Drummond sustained Mr Burke’s submission and accordingly found Johnstone not guilty.

She had been charged with having a dog dangerously out of control, which jumped on a child, causing her to fall to the ground, and bit her on the head to her severe injury and permanent disfigurement near her home in May 2013.