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Prison still possible for owner of dogs that killed girl

By Zhang Yu in Shijiazhuang | | Updated: 2019-11-29 19:49
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The owner of two dogs that mauled a 9-year-old girl to death last week in Baoding, North China's Hebei province, might still face criminal charges for causing death by negligence by the local procuratorate, even if the victim's family doesn't demand the owner be criminally responsible, a lawyer said.

"This belongs to a public-prosecuting case, in which the victim's family can be involved but has no right to decide whether or not to charge the owner with criminal responsibility," said Zhao Yunling, a lawyer with Dentons law firm in Shijiazhuang.

The girl was badly bitten by two vicious dogs on her way to school in Cuiguzhuang village in Quyang county at about 8 am on Nov 21. She later died of bite wounds after she was sent to a hospital, reported Yanzhao Metropolis Daily.

Her family was given 500,000 yuan ($71,000) by the dogs' owner as compensation on Nov 25, the girl's father said in a interview video by the Beijing News.

"We will not ask for the owner to be prosecuted," the father said, adding that the dogs' owner was not at home when the dogs ran out of the home. The dogs were normally locked in cages but that day were not, he said.

The dogs' owner has not given an explanation on why the dogs got out, the Beijing News reported.

A member of the girl's family said the dogs' owner and the family live in the same village and the family decided not to seek criminal charges because the owner didn't let the dogs out on purpose.

Cui Xingwei, the village's Party chief, said in the video that the county-level government held a meeting after the incident to decide what regulations should be rolled out regarding raising dogs in rural areas.

"Large dogs will be forbidden, and especially can't be kept by individuals," Cui said.

"The keeper of the dogs should be a suspect of the crime of causing death by negligence, given the situation that he or she didn't watch the dogs carefully or attach any muzzles on the dogs' heads, which resulted in the dogs showing up at a public place and biting someone," Xie Zhenhua, a lawyer with Kingpound Law Firm in Guangzhou, was quoted as saying by news website

According to the country's criminal law, the crime carries sentences of up to three to seven years in prison, Xie said.

The local publicity department or public security department could not be reached for comment.

According to the report by, the case is under investigation by local criminal police.

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