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Sonoma councilwoman wants crackdown on pit bulls

  • 5/25/2010: B1:

    PC: Joanne Sanders

A Sonoma councilwoman said she wants the city to reconsider regulating pit bulls and other dog breeds after a pregnant Pacifica woman was mauled to death last week by her family pet.

Joanne Sanders asked city staff at Monday's City Council meeting to research options for regulating what she called vicious dogs.

In an interview Tuesday, Sanders said she personally supports banning pit bulls within city limits.

"I think pit bulls are a great start," she said.

Sanders said the city previously considered but failed to enact legislation regulating certain dog breeds.

She said her motivation to bring the issue back was sparked by last Thursday's attack in Pacifica that killed Darla Napora, 32.

Authorities said Napora bled to death after she was mauled by her pit bull.

The attack re-ignited the long-running debate over whether pit bulls and other dog breeds are inherently dangerous. The dog involved in the Pacifica attack was an unneutered 2-year-old male pit bull.

A state law enacted in 2005 gave California communities the power to require spaying and neutering for specific dog breeds. The law was passed following a series of high-profile pit bull attacks in San Francisco, Sonoma County and other parts of the state.

The county of Sonoma, as well as several cities within the county, have additional penalties for the owners of dangerous pets, including registration fees, fines and a requirement that owners of dogs judged vicious must procure $500,000 in liability insurance if they want to keep their pet.


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