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Dog that bit Haverhill man and left him needing 36 stitches should be put down, orders judge

A dog at the centre of a court case which led to a 25-year-old man being jailed should be destroyed, a judge has ruled - although the animal may yet win a reprieve.

Ollie Deeks had tried to buy the silence of a man in Haverhill bitten by the pet and then made threats in an attempt to have the complaint dropped.

Deeks, of Fornham Road, Bury St Edmunds, was convicted of attempting to pervert the course of justice by offering the victim money to drop the allegation and of making threats, following a trial at Ipswich Crown Court earlier this year.

Deeks had earlier pleaded guilty to having a dog dangerously out of control.

Yesterday Deeks appeared at the same court to contest an application to have the dog involved in the case destroyed.

After hearing submissions from the Crown Prosecution Service and Deeks legal team, Judge Martyn Levett said he considered it necessary for the dog to be destroyed.

However, Judge Levett ruled that the destruction order should not be activated for 28 days to allow another man who was the owner of the dog the opportunity to lodge an appeal against the decision.

In March, Judge Levett sentenced Deeks to a total of 12 months imprisonment and banned him from owning a dog for seven years.

The man who was injured was Michael Harrison, 32, who was bitten on the wrist at a property in Ickleton Place, Haverhill on April 25 last year by a pit bull cross called 'Diablo'.

Mr Harrison required 36 stitches to close the wound and subsequently spent several weeks in hospital undergoing surgery and being treated after the bite

became infected, said Katherine Bradshaw prosecuting.

The prosecution alleged that after Mr Harrison made a statement to police about what had happened, he was first offered money to drop his allegations and then faced threats.

Giving evidence, Mr Harrison said Deeks had told him to say a different dog had been responsible for the injury and was warned that Deeks would send "his people" after him.

During the trial Deeks told the jury that he had never threatened or attempted to bribe Mr Harrison into withdrawing his allegations.

Deeks said he had only offered Mr Harrison money for food and denied making any threats.

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