Grandfather's guilty plea in dog mauling case

By Sandra Conchie -

The grandfather of a 6-year-old boy mauled by a dog intends to seek a discharge without conviction.

Graham Leslie Hartley, 75, who appeared in Tauranga District Court today, pleaded guilty to a charge of being the owner of a dog which caused injury - an offence which attracts a maximum sentence of three years in prison.

The attack and mauling occurred at Hartley's Paengaroa home on October 11 last year while his grandson was trying to feed the dog.

Hartley originally denied the charge.

His lawyer Kaye Davies urged Judge Stephen Coyle not to enter a conviction, saying she would be applying for a discharge without conviction for her client.

Mrs Davies said Hartley and the victim's family had agreed to participate in a restorative justice conference.

Judge Coyle agreed not to enter a conviction and called for a restorative justice meeting to be held.

The judge remanded Hartley at large, and ordered him to reappear in court on May 18 for the discharge application to be heard, and if unsuccessful, for sentencing.

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