Monday, May 15, 2006

Ontario Legal Court Challenge Begins "DAY ONE"

I'm hoping we get some members into the court room that can send us out what is happening to keep us updated. I, as so many of us anxiously wait for any piece of information.
The court challenge as it stands, is schedueled for today and tomorrow in Toronto High Court. Now it's OUR time to fight and with Clayton Ruby at the helm, we feel very confident.
Court would have started at 10 AM and here is is just passed 11, so I can't expect to hear anything yet...but knowing court was today, I woke up bright and early not to miss any of the details.
I'll keep you posted the moment I hear ANYthing!!!
Prayers always welcome!!!!

As for Newspapers articles, in The Toronto:

Pit bull owner takes on provincial law
Last updated May 15 2006 08:00 AM EDT CBC News

Ontario's pit bull legislation gets its first major court test Monday, with renowned lawyer Clayton Ruby defending a dog owner who says the law is unconstitutional and vague.

Pit bull legislation gets court test. (File photo)

Catherine Cochrane, who owns a pit bull-type dog named Chess, is the first person to challenge the controversial provincial legislation that took effect last summer.

"I think there are lots of dogs capable of biting people and I don't think this [law] does anything to prevent that at all," Cochrane told CBC News over the weekend. "I don't think it promotes responsible dog ownership. I don't think it addresses the problem in any meaningful way."

Ruby will argue in Superior Court that the vast majority of pit bulls are just like Chess – friendly, loving animals – and that legally characterizing all pit bulls as dangerous is overly broad, vague and unconstitutional.

Cochrane figured Chess was the perfect dog to challenge what she considers a bad law.

"I thought she would put a good face to it," Cochrane said. "She's a cute, well-behaved dog and we needed that.
We are just one example of lots of pit bull owners."

Chess can't chase balls or play with other dogs in the park now because Cochrane is legally bound to keep her leashed and muzzled anytime the dog is outdoors. Penalties for breaking the law include a fine of up to $10,000 and jail time.

"Primarily, I would say the quality of life for me and my dog is greatly diminished [by the law]," Cochrane said.

FROM MARCH 2, 2005: Ontario pit bull ban passed

Attorney General Michael Bryant, who called the animals "ticking time bombs" when he brought in the legislation, said last week he was confident the law would survive a court challenge.

In the Toronto Sun today:

Biting back at ban
Pit bull law challenged

Katie MacKellar treats her dogs, pit bull-mix Penny, left, and golden retriever Goldie, yesterday in her Scarborough backyard. MacKellar opposes the Ontario government's ban on pit bulls. A challenge of the law begins today. (Jack Boland, Sun)

Katie MacKellar thinks the province is barking up the wrong tree with its controversial pit bull legislation and hopes lawyer Clayton Ruby can overturn the ban on the breed.

"Some people immediately cross the street when we go to the park," MacKellar said of walking her 4-year-old pit bull-mix, Penny. "What needs to be done is for people to be educated how to control their dog and those who cross-breed them."

Your say: Agree with the pit bull ban?

For now, though, Ruby will begin arguing today in Ontario Superior Court that the legislation is over-broad because the definition of which breeds are barred is too vague.


Staffordshire bull terriers, American Staffordshire terriers, American pit bull terriers or any dog having an appearance and physical characteristics of those breeds are included in the ban.

He called the move a "cheap political fix" by Queen's Park. "It will, however, force the owners of friendly, happy dogs, who have never bitten anyone, to leash them and muzzle them without any reason whatsoever," Ruby said.

Sharon Hewitt of Bullies in Need, an Ontario pit bull rescue, said shelters are waiting anxiously for the bill to expire.

An influx of pit bulls have been dropped off at shelters since the ban came into effect last August. About seven out of 10 are euthanized.

The law is being challenged in the name of pit bull owner Catherine Cochrane.

Attorney General Michael Bryant has said he is confident the legislation will meet the court's scrutiny.


pitbulljungle said...

The fight begins.....

I can't wait to see what the outcome of all this is.

Conners said...

I'm a bundle of anxious nerves waiting for 'any' results what so ever. What a WONDERFUL Mothers Day gift this would be to all us Bullie Mommy's and Daddy's!!!!