Local Pit Bull Owner Drops Lawsuit Against Victims of Dog Attack
After nearly a month of public scrutiny over her million dollar lawsuit, the Texas City woman who was suing her neighbors for injuries she says she sustained after her four pit bulls broke through a shared fence and killed her neighbor's beagle has dropped her lawsuit.
Emerald White, a Texas City woman with four pit bulls, filed the lawsuit against her neighbor, Steve Baker, in mid-November, stating that she was "seriously injured" while trying to retrieve her four pit bulls, which had broken through a shared fence and were attacking Baker's dog on his property.
White said she suffered "multiple serious bite and scratch-type injuries," during the incident due to Baker "failing to properly train the animal in question to prevent the vicious behavior of the animal," and "failing to securely confine and restrict" Bailey, a 10-year-old Beagle. Bailey was killed in the attack.
Baker, on the other hand, contended that the injuries White was suing for were caused by either her own dogs, or happened when she crawled through a hole in the fence to get a hold on her four pit bulls.
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As expected, White's idea to file a million dollar lawsuit against her neighbor, who had just lost his dog in the attack, didn't go over so well. After word of the lawsuit spread, the public made it clear that they disagreed with the idea that the homeowner should be held responsible for White's injuries.
Baker, who had initially filed an insurance claim that would have settled the entire dispute, agreed. He withdrew his insurance claim in light of the lawsuit, vowing to fight it out in court instead.
"If this case was something even close to legitimate, I would let it go," Baker told the Galveston County Daily News. "But this is a money grab."
Luckily, it now appears no one will have to fight this thing out in court, because White has had a change of heart. On December 1st, she withdrew her lawsuit against Baker, stating that she "no longer desires to prosecute this suit."
We're sure that's a relief for Baker, who has stated previously that he would not counter-sue if White would just drop her lawsuit. It's presumably also a relief for White, who has been on the wrong end of some public outrage since her filing.
But that doesn't mean everyone gets off scot-free. Following the attack, White's dogs were declared dangerous, which means that they'll have to play nice or it's the doghouse for those pit bulls. White will also have to register them with Texas City each year, according to police.
She will also have to post a sign in her yard alerting residents of the danger, keep $100,000 liability on the dogs, and install a fence that is higher than 6 feet, which will hopefully keep them -- including White -- all fenced in.