Boy, 10, attacked by police dog while playing in his grandmother's Oldbury garden
West Midlands Police apologise unreservedly for the "horrendous ordeal"
Oliver Duggan has a BA in Politics and Parliamentary Studies from the University of Leeds and an MA in Newspaper Journalism from City University London. He works as a freelance reporter and editorial assistant for The Independent and i with a focus on Home Affairs and politics.
Thursday 27 June 2013
A 10-year-old boy from Oldbury was seriously injured in an attack by a police dog in his grandmother’s back garden on Sunday, it has emerged.
The incident, which occurred when officers responded to reports of a people stealing copper cables nearby, saw Tom Cutbill bitten by a German Shepherd-Belgian Malinois cross.
West Midlands Police confirmed today that they would carry out their own investigation into the incident. Meanwhile, the child remains in hospital undergoing treatment for the bite.
Chief Inspector Ian Marsh apologised “unreservedly” to the family for what happened, adding: "This poor young boy has gone through an absolutely horrendous ordeal and my thoughts are with him and his family as he recovers from his injuries.
"Police dogs and their handlers receive intensive training and play crucial roles in the arrest of suspects, but on the very rare occasions where things go wrong, it's vital we understand why and learn the lessons to ensure it does not happen again."
Following independent assessments of their health, the dog and its handler continue to carry out regular duties, police said.
The boy’s grandmother, 52-year-old Bev Bakewell, told a newspaper: “I couldn't believe it. Tom was playing in the back garden fixing his scooter in the shed.
“They didn't even give any kind of warning they were coming into the garden, no shouts of "police" or anything, they just barged in. Tom was lying on the grass near the gate and the dog just went for him.
“That dog was still on the leash held by the policeman, it should have been well under control, there's no way the attack should have happened. My son came in through the back door and then suddenly we started hearing screaming.
She added: “It's like a horror movie, it's terrible, no-one can sleep, I don't think Tom will be able to play in my garden again, his mother and father are just devastated.
“Tom's back home now, but he's already been in surgery twice and has been left with two nasty gashes on the back of his leg. It's just terrifying that something like this could be allowed to happen.”
- 1 This 'woman calls police to order pizza' story isn't going where you're expecting
- 2 Marijuana use by teenagers does not result in a lower IQ or worse exam results, study finds
- 3 Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
- 4 Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes too far at the Q Awards
- 5 NHS staff banned from drinking tea or coffee on the job because it looks like they're not working hard enough
Renee Zellweger on plastic surgery: 'I'm living a more fulfilling life and I'm thrilled that perhaps it shows'
Kim Jong-un 'purge': Six North Korea officials missing for weeks 'may have been executed'
Diwali: What is the festival of lights – and how is it celebrated around the world?
Nathan Cirillo: Final pictures emerge of soldier moments before he was shot dead by Ottowa gunman
Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes too far at the Q Awards
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991' with most Brits wanting to stay 'in'
Thousands with degenerative conditions classified as 'fit to work in future' – despite no possibility of improvement
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
£300 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: SSRS Report Developer – 3 Mon...
£95 - £150 per day: Randstad Education Birmingham: Key Stage 1 teacher require...
£32000 - £39000 per annum + benefits + bonus: Ashdown Group: Generalist HR Man...
£18000 - £30000 per annum + uncapped: SThree: Do you feel like your sales role...