A 90-year-old woman from Phoenix, Arizona faces a $2,500 fine and/or jail time over a barking dog dispute with her neighbor. Dolly Dentz, an extremely independent senior, says her two dogs named Fluffy and Boots are part of her family; she loves both of the two year old terriers her son gifted to her.
Dentz could lose her dogs as well as wind up in jail. The sad story began six months ago when Jerry Angerman, Dolly’s next door neighbor, filed a complaint with the City of Phoenix claiming the dogs were barking day and night. According to AzFamily.com, Angerman kept a written log of days and times the dogs barked. Dolly was charged with a class-one misdemeanor. But there’s more, because Dolly says her dogs are not barkers. AH Watukee reports Dentz’ son, who has been caring for Fluffy and Boots, states the neighbor is angry at the wrong pet owner. The complaint filed with the city lists a third barking dog which doesn’t belong to Dolly.
In Phoenix, anyone can file a barking dog complaint, and all they have to do is keep a log of the perceived barking offenses. No video evidence is required nor is a report from the local police, so in theory if your dog is on the wrong side of the neighbor’s “dislike list,” it could mean big trouble for dog and dog owner alike. The city did offer mediation between Angerman and Dolly, but that wasn’t successful:
“We agreed to get barking-dog collars, keep the doors closed overnight, and said if they bark, we’ll stop them,” Bob Dentz stated, “but Angerman said he wanted her to plead guilty. He wanted her on probation.”
“I’m not going to plead guilty to something,” said Dolly Dentz. “They don’t bark. They’re really not barking dogs.”
So basically Dolly, who has lived in the same retirement home for the last 37 years, has become so stressed she has broken down and cried in public worrying about what will happen to her and the two dogs who share her life. She faces the same crime classification for her barking dogs which includes charges of drunk driving and domestic violence. A judge could sentence her to six-months in jail. What kind of justice is this?
Dolly is due back in court on June 16th.
(Photo of barking dogs screenshot by Kimberly Carrillo via AHWatukeeNews)
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