In Ohio, pit bulls had been regulated since 1987, in legislation passed in the aftermath of several horrific pit bull attacks, in order to prevent additional attacks and protect innocent members of the public.
In 2012 a group of determined Toledo-area pit bull advocates prevailed upon the Ohio legislature to go behind the backs of the voters and remove the legal protections that had been in place concerning the ownership of pit bull type dogs. After these legal protections were removed, pit owners were emboldened and the horrific pit bull attacks began to ramp up in earnest.
Zainabou Drame, 6 years old, pictured below, was mauled in an unprovoked attack by the neighbor’s pit bulls who broke her jaw and tore out her tongue. Zainabou was in an induced coma for weeks. She will never speak again.
The pit bull owner did not face any charges in the attack, as he enjoyed the protections afforded by the new Ohio legislation. It’s unfortunate that there was no protection for Zainabou.
Commissioner Jane Philbrook apparently sees no need for proactive measures to protect victims, instead favoring a system under which harm must first come to victims before any action is taken – a system which favors the rights of dangerous dog fanciers to inflict these nightmares on their communities rather than the rights of the community – and innocent victims like Zainabou – to live in peace.