Kilburn: Slow response when boy, 8, attacked

THE POLICE and a council were accused of putting people s safety at risk when two dogs attacked a young boy, writes Glenn McMahon . Eight-year-old Albin Muzaci was set upon while playing with a ball in front of his home, in Mortimer Crescent, Kilburn, but

THE POLICE and a council were accused of putting people's safety at risk when two dogs attacked a young boy, writes Glenn McMahon .

Eight-year-old Albin Muzaci was set upon while playing with a ball in front of his home, in Mortimer Crescent, Kilburn, but he only suffered minor injuries when his father dashed to the rescue.

Camden police, who took more than 90 minutes to respond to the call, were accused of not taking the incident seriously.

Hetem, the boy's father, said: "I feel let down. When I called the police I said my boy had been attacked. I don't think they take it seriously. I just want to prevent this happening again. I hope people learn that they should keep their dogs on leads."


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Camden Council was also criticised for failing to help address the problem.

Mr Muzaci said: "I tried to speak to the council, but our area manager is often not there to talk to and she never called back. I'm fed up now. Thank God nothing happened."

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Father and son had their injuries treated in hospital and released later that night. Mr Muzaci injured his back falling down the stairs, as he raced to help his son.

Albin, who suffers from nightmares, now sleeps with his parents.

This was the second complaint about police response to dangerous dogs in the area. A neighbour reported a dog-on-dog incident a day earlier.

The woman, who didn't want to be named, said: "I phoned up the police the day before when two dogs were snarling at each other. The police told me: 'You can't phone us up about dogs like that. Get on to Camden council who have got a dog patrol.'

"But Camden Council don't have a dog patrol. They just pick strays up."

"Thank God the kid didn't get hurt too badly. I want this to be a warning to the police and the dog owners."

A police spokeswoman said of the July 12 attack: "Officers attended as soon as they could. It wouldn't have gone down as an urgent call as no one was being attacked [at the time of the call].

"With children we are extremely careful and if there was any suggestion that it was more than an accident we would have taken our own action.

"But if you think there is an immediate threat to property or life you should call 999 and we can come along with a dog unit and assist. Otherwise, if it's a stray dog you should call the council or the RSPCA if it's being mistreated."

A spokeswoman for Camden Council said: "The council will issue warnings to dog owners if their animal's behaviour continues to cause concern. The warnings remind owners about their responsibilities.

"If the behaviour of their animal does not improve and the owner refuses to engage with the council, their dog can be seized and they could be subject to formal interventions such as ASBOs and injunctions.

"If the owner is a council tenant, a ban from owning animals could be imposed as a condition of their tenancy.

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