A resident from Cannock has been fined after failing to pick up after one of her dogs fouled.
Mrs Maureen Smith from Hednesford Road, Cannock attended Cannock Magistrates Court and entered a not guilty plea, after being caught by a member of the public after failing to pick up after one of her dogs fouled on a local football pitch.
However, Mrs Smith was found guilty on 13 May 2019 by Cannock Magistrates Court and was fined £150, ordered to pay costs of £700 and a victim surcharge of £20.
Mrs Smith had been offered the opportunity to avoid court proceedings in relation to the dog fouling incident, by paying a Fixed Penalty, which she declined. Therefore, the case proceeded to court.
Dog fouling remains one of the most frequent causes of complaint and patrols operate regularly in areas prone dog fouling.
The Council has now introduced a Public Space Protection Order (Dog Control) which supersedes the 2 previous Dog Control Orders in place from 2010.
The Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) is now in force and makes it an offence for the person in control of a dog to not remove faeces, from land to which the Order applies, immediately after the dog has fouled.
The Order also makes it an offence to not have or produce, when requested by an authorised officer, a receptacle for picking up dog faeces prior to it`s disposal. It is also an offence to not dispose of the dog faeces in a suitable bin provided for the disposal of waste, including standard litter bins.
Anyone found guilty of any of these offences can be issued with a £100 Fixed Penalty Notice payable within 14 days. Failure to pay this fine could result in a prosecution at the Magistrates Court where the maximum fine is currently £1000.
Councillor John Preece, Portfolio Leader for Environment said “The Council takes dog fouling very seriously and will always consider taking action against offenders where reports are received from members of the public who have seen a dog fouling and are able to provide officers with credible evidence of the offence. In these cases officers will need to take a witness statement from the person reporting the fouling, for use should it be necessary to take the offender to Court. However, the vast majority of offenders pay the Fixed Penalty rather than take the risk of going to court and receiving a much larger fine.”
Cannock Chase Council is committed to improving the environment for local communities, businesses and visitors to the area. Officers regularly undertake patrols across the District in an effort to tackle those responsible for littering and dog fouling.
Incidents can be reported by contacting the Council on 01543 462621, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or via the website.