Burien Upholds Ban Of Pit Bull That Attacked Woman, But Will Not Destroy It

Print This Post  Email This Post

Attorney Christopher M. Davis wrote an interesting piece on his blog Tuesday (Sept. 21st), about his Burien client Jeanette Cunningham’s case about a “dangerous” pit bull dog that attacked her in July (we first covered this story here and here).

As many of our Readers will recall, Jeanette had to have major facial surgery to “get her smile back” because of the attack. Her face was disfigured in the attack, with the majority of the damage done to her mouth and chin area, caused by the dog jumping up and biting her face. A fundraiser auction was held for her Aug. 31st, and over $5,500 was raised for her.

A hearing was held in Burien this morning, where it was discovered that Burien’s animal control department had already released the pit bull back to its owners. Apparently city laws only permit it to “ban” animals from city limits, not to destroy or euthanize the dog.

Davis writes:

This morning I attended a “Dangerous Dog” hearing in the City of Burien. The hearing involved an appeal by the owners of a dangerous pit bull dog. The owners were appealing the City’s determination that the dog was dangerous and should be banned from the city limits.

The dog owners, Gabriele and Juan Garcia, appealed the City of Burien’s decision to declare the animal dangerous and then ban it from the City. That determination was eventually upheld by the hearing examiner this morning (Tuesday, Sept. 21).

The dog owner testified this morning that the animal has since gone to live with relatives in the City of Yakima where it will likely live out the remainder of its life. What’s unclear is whether the City of Yakima has any idea that a dangerous dog is now living within its boundaries. My guess is that it has no idea, particularly when the City of Yakima also has a law banning pit bulls.

Nonetheless, I have to seriously question the wisdom of the City of Burien for not adopting a dangerous dog ordinance that allows it to euthanize an animal that has already seriously maimed and disfigured a human being within its boundaries.

Read the rest of Davis’ blog here.

Here’s a video report by Q13 Fox on this story:

Here’s another from KING-TV:

So what do YOU think? Should the city have euthanized the pit bull or not? Please take our Poll or leave a Comment below:

Should the City of Burien have euthanized the pit bull that attacked Jeanette Cunningham?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Print This Post  Email This Post


25 Responses to “Burien Upholds Ban Of Pit Bull That Attacked Woman, But Will Not Destroy It”
  1. Wayne says:

    I feel bad about what happened to the victim, but her story doesn’t sound very legit or complete. Someone, or both sides, isn’t telling the whole truth… As always, the media’s portrayal of the story is biased against pit bulls. Quit being ignorant and do your research– any dog can be dangerous, it depends on how they are trained. Can the news cover more serious topics? What about obesity (preventable) and how many deaths and illnesses result from that? Do they research yourself on pit bull deaths versus obesity deaths. Maybe we should prioritize a bit more…

    • Sniffer says:


      My god are more stupid people coming out of the wood works on this one….

      Comparing obesity to dangerous dogs are two different topics so stop making straw man arguments about the issue that’s really ad hand on this blog.

      People can eat whatever they want to, even if I don’t agree with it, because it only hurts them. But when you own a ptbull, that can get loose and kill multiple people, then you have a serious problem.

      Purebred Pitbulls alone have killed over 188+ children and adults in the past 4 years, this is 3x more than any other breed of dog… with Labradors coming in at 2 human fatalities in the past five to ten years….

      Go educate yourself properly you ignorant….

  2. Steve says:

    Correct, not all pit bulls are bad… that’s for sure. HOWEVER, this one attacked someone.. almost took her face off. Time to put the dog down unfortunately before it mauls a kid or worse.

    It’s the same thing they do to any other animal that attacks a human unprovoked. I personally believe the owners should be fined as well. If you can’t control your animal, you shouldn’t have one.

  3. Jim Branson says:

    If the owners let the dog roam out in the street unattended, then the owners are at fault. At any rate, the dog was not to blame. If the dog had been properly trained and socialized, this would not have happened. The owners should be fined, and they should have to pay the medical costs of the injured woman. Killing the dog after the fact makes about as much sense as shooting a Chevy with a shotgun after a car wreck. Destroying the car wouldn’t stop the bad driver from getting another car, and killing the dog would not stop the owners of the dog from getting another dog and failing to train or monitor him.

    The dog is not even a pit bull. It is a mixed breed mutt. You could just as easily call the dog a labrador mix. The media has chosen to call the dog a pit bull in order to sensationalize the case and boost viewership. The breed of the dog is entirely irrelevant to the story. A woman was injured due to negligence on the part of people. The sensationalism about a “dangerous pit bull” does nothing to solve the underlying problem.

  4. Jim Branson says:

    Do a search for “Snaps, pit bull” on the B-Town Blog and read that story. He is doing just fine at the Olympic Animal Sanctuary, living a happy life, not hurting or threatening anyone. The woman who was attacked by Snaps even said that he didn’t want to bite her, but his owners were forcing him to. Killing Snaps would have done nothing to make the world a safer place. Neither would killing the dog in this case. Continued ignorance about dogs, fueled by the obviously slanted media coverage like in the King 5 story, is far more dangerous.

    • Sniffer says:

      “The woman who was attacked by Snaps even said that he didn’t want to bite her”


      That statement doesn’t even begin to make sense.
      If you could train any dog to attack with the propensity and power of a pitbull then there would be fighting labradors, greyhounds, and pugs. But no, they don’t, and they generally don’t kill people.

      In fact, I’ve never heard a case of a greyhound killing any human being. Despite the thousands that are taken from abusive and neglectful situations every day and placed in loving and caring homes.

      There are many dogs who were never trained to fight and were raised in loving homes that kill the kids and rip off ligaments.

      People aren’t making this stuff up…..

      Stop being ignorant about what’s right in front of you and do something productive about the situation.

  5. Burien1 says:

    euthanize the dog’s owners. They probably have another by now.

  6. feral dog says:

    Unfortunately the stigma of pits will never go away thanks to so bad owners.
    I really think the prejudice of the b-townblog shows when their poll specifies a certain breed and not just all animals in general, ANY dangerous animal should be destroyed (domesticated animal) but she eben says that the pit did NOT want to attack but that the owners kept provoking to do so. Well, maybe the wrong species is to balme here.
    Seems to this mutt that Gabrielle and Juan should be the ones euthanized, not the mutt.
    Throw their irresponsible asses in jail and let them maybe experience what its like to be somebodies bitch.

  7. Shari says:

    This story, along with failed condo projects, helps fill a well-defined niche in the local media’s coverage of Burien– they seem to want to reinforce and perpetuate a particular image of Burien and those of us who live here (and who chose to live here because of some pretty terrific community characteristics) are constantly fighting to correct the misperception that this town is some kind of lawless blighted mess. This story is an important one relative to ordinances and community safety, but it would certainly be nice to see a more balanced treatment.

    • Eaton B. Verz says:

      ” those of us who live here (and who chose to live here because of some pretty terrific community characteristics) are constantly fighting to correct the misperception that this town is some kind of lawless blighted mess.”

      Take a walk around Chelsea park one evening…. And then get back to me

  8. Linda says:

    Jeanette – I could not believe it when I saw this story on the news. How can I donate to your cause because I missed your event? Say hi to Rod for me and I wish you the best.

  9. Yes, we here at The B-Town Blog are prejudiced…against this particular dog. That’s because we met Jeanette and saw first-hand what it did to her face. We even saw photos so grotesque that we refused to include them in her original post.

    We’re basing this story on what we know. We haven’t heard anything to disprove Jeanette’s account of the attack yet. When/if we do, we’ll post that also.

    To say we have a prejudice against one breed of dog though is wrong – we only dislike the ones that attack people unprovoked.


    • feral dog says:

      At the risk of being banned to my kennel. The dog was provoked, by it`s irresponsible owners. What`s happening to them,, anything? I feel terrible for what happened to Jeanette and myself, being a mutt, don`t trust pits as far as I can throw them, I know they have a tendency to attack unprovoked, if they knock their prey down, (like kids) something goes off in their brain and old instincts kick in and God forbid the kids alone. But,,, I also know they are extremely loyal to their owners.
      One more thing before I go outside,,, I just happen to re-read my earlier post,,,

      Holy Smokes,, I sure hope the faithful here at the B-townblog can read typonese…

      I really think Burien needs to revamp it`s stance on dangerous animals though,, a animal that`s a threat to ANY community should be destroyed and made into a pair of slippers or something and the meat sold to good old Mcdonalds and made into people burgers to help support the town of Burien.

      Ummm, Hey Shari,
      About This statement,, “particular image of Burien and those of us who live here (and who chose to live here because of some pretty terrific community characteristics)”
      What about those of us that got stuck being annexed into this town that their council keeps trying to make into something it`s not, nor wants to be from what I can see through my fence. Its Burien, with small town charm and not BELL Town or bellevue like the council seems to envision.. They want a bellevue,, they can move there.
      And quit pricing everyone out,,

  10. unclewoo says:

    You mean like the innocent dog the cops shot? And then you showed pictures of its blood on the ground as it lay dieing? What happened to the TAO? I don’t care for pitbulls either, but BTB is about as fair and balanced as FOX News.

  11. unclewoo I’m sure I speak for many of our Contributors and Readers when I say:

    “I can’t wait to read YOUR unbiased, fair and balanced local news blog!”


    • Stan says:

      That`s the beauty of having your own blog, it can be as biased or unbiased as the owner wants it to be,, Could you imagine what a blog would like it feral dog had one?? Or does he?

  12. JD says:

    This story is about the ridiculousness of Burien’s animal control law. This dog should be put down because it is dangerous and will harm another person if given the opportunity. I know the dog, the owners and I’ve met Jeanette. It’s all around a very bad situation. This dog was left outside day and night with little human interaction. It would bark for hours for no apparent reason and just prior to the attack it was sick or injured and acting strangely. I know this because I lived next to the dog. Go ahead blame Kiko, the breed or the owners but it’s not going to improve Jeanette’s situation.

    The city council needs to recognize that Burien has released a dangerous dog to another community where it can attack another human. This is ridiculous and wrong; all of us citizens will pay the price when the city is sued for a ton of money the next time Kiko attacks.

  13. Tammy says:

    JD…I couldn’t of said it any better!!!…I’am Jeanette’s sister-in-law and have been best friends with her since the third grade.It’s so Heart Wrenching what has happened to Jeanette!!!! Their is only “1” reason Jeanette is pursueing this issue, and that’s to keep this DOG and any OTHER dog from attacking and/or killing any other human being, and having to endure the physical & emotional pain and will endure for the rest of her life!!!!

  14. Tammy says:

    To Burien City Council: I live in a rural part of Washington and one of my neighbors, shot and killed another neighbors dog, because it was chasing her horses. The dog didn’t even have to attack first and that was her right to do so. According to the LAW! What do you think this is saying to us(we the people) ? That an ANIMALS life is above a HUMANS life? I hope you take this into consideration and change YOUR LAWS, and protect all HUMANS first & foremost!!!

  15. Kman says:

    I was one of the 2 first EMTs on scene to render aid to this patient. This dog was extremely aggressive and we were very concerned about our and the patient’s continued safety with this animal within striking distance. This poor woman will be disfigured for life and someone actually wants to keep this dog alive? Nurture or nature, folks it doesn’t matter…if a human had done this they would be locked up for aggravated assault and quite possibly attempted murder (doing 10+ in Walla Walla).
    Burien, pull your head out! Human Beings are lives, animals (especially vicious ones), are property. Protect your citizens and destroy a hazard that can cause further tragedy!!!

Share Your Opinion

By participating in our online comment system, you are agreeing to abide by the terms of our comment policy.

...and oh, if you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!