Replacement for killer dogs

By Amanda Snow

Owner of dog that mauled Chloe Matthewson houses another.

German shepherd dog at the Redvale property. Photo / Doug Sherring
German shepherd dog at the Redvale property. Photo / Doug Sherring

Neighbours of a house where a woman was mauled to death by rottweilers are outraged another big dog is at the address.

Pilates instructor Chloe Mathewson, 31, was found dead on the driveway of the semi-rural property in Redvale on Auckland's North Shore in March.

It is understood she had been visiting Andrew Wai Poi, the owner of the three dogs that were seized and destroyed.

No charges have been laid but Detective Inspector Greg Cramer said the investigation was ongoing.

Now, residents are concerned another big dog is at the house and it has already sparked a complaint.

Auckland Council has confirmed an animal management officer visited the house this month after a passerby complained a German shepherd rushed out and barked as she walked her dog past the open gate.

The German shepherd was seized, as it was unregistered, but was returned when the owner paid the fees and registered the animal.

"Council has stipulated the owner must keep it confined at the back of the property at all times," said manager of licensing services Graham Bodman.

However, the Herald on Sunday visited this week and the dog was at the front of the house unrestrained. The gate bore a "beware of the dog" sign but was wide open.

One concerned resident said the dog was at the property soon after the fatal attack. He said he was surprised another dog was allowed there.

"If you are caught drunk driving once, you don't get your licence back for six months," he said. "I don't know what happens when your dogs kill someone. I understand it wasn't probably his fault but dogs are pretty dangerous."

In an earlier incident, he said the dogs that were eventually destroyed had attacked a neighbour's cows and Chloe Mathewson tried to sort it out.

"I heard the ruckus from here and I went out and the poor girl was out on the road in a bit of a state, wondering how to control the dogs."

In hindsight he wondered whether he should have shot the dogs that night.

"It was tragic the way things worked out, that those animals later killed her," he said.

The council issued an infringement over the incident in November, but the owner wasn't prosecuted.

A neighbour believes the council should have done more.

"Those dogs should have been seized and destroyed then and there."

Occupants of the house this week did not respond to requests to talk.

After her death, Chloe's father, Jim Mathewson, principal of Birkenhead College, said he and her brother, Ben, were shattered over their loss.

When told a new dog was at the address Mathewson said he wasn't aware of it.

"[I'm] obviously surprised, but I think we will let police do their thing and see what unfolds," he said. "You can imagine how I feel about a lot of things."

The coroner's office said Chloe's death was being investigated and no date had been set for an inquest.

- Herald on Sunday

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