Fenstermaker's Loss a Reminder

Fenstermaker's Loss a Reminder

Posted in the Leesburg Forum

Since: Aug 08

Albany, GA

#1 Sep 3, 2008
After reading about the Fenstermaker’s loss of a beloved family member, Clifford, to pit bull attack, I cannot help but recall the similar experience of my elderly parents, David and Eloise Clearman, in February 2007.

While spending part of the afternoon in their fenced-in back yard with their six, small dogs, a neighbor’s pit bull jumped the fence and initiated a vicious attack. Eloise (70) and David (76) fought not only to save their small dogs, but the pit bull as well. Only as a last resort did my dad shoot and kill the pit bull.

When it was over, my mom suffered a bite to the hand and my dad a broken hand, three dogs were seriously injured, and a beloved family member, Lacey, was fatally mauled.

I wanted to take my mother to the emergency room, but the Albany Police Department refused, calling an ambulance instead. The police confiscated my dad’s gun and returned the pit bull to the owner without verifying whether it had received rabies vaccinations, resulting in a series of painful rabies shots to my already ailing mom. The police department claimed they were unaware my mom was bitten, despite calling an ambulance to treat the bite.

The Albany Police Department refused to press charges against the pit bull owner, instead threatening to charge my dad with discharging a firearm within the city limits and cruelty to animals. The APD’s reasoning was that my 76 year-old dad did not do all he could to prevent the death of the pit bull. Calls and emails to Police Chief James Younger, City Manager Alfred Lott, District Attorney Ken Hodges, and Mayor Willie Adams were not returned. I should also note that Chief Younger refused to engage me on Wk,ALG-1590’s “Wake-Up Albany”.

In the end, my parents were out several thousand dollars in veterinary and doctor bills, and most importantly, their beloved Yorkie, Lacey; the owner of the pit bull suffered no consequences. No attorney would take the case.

To the Fenstermaker family, I understand your loss and you have my sympathies. I will never forget the sight of my mom sobbing as she held Lacey for the last time. Unlike the Albany Police Department, it appears the Leesburg Police Department takes its mission “To Serve and Protect” seriously. It is up to all Leesburg residents, including myself, to hold the city council’s feet to the fire and prevent this from happening to one of our children.

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