Dog owner must pay court £800

A dog owner has been ordered to pay more than £800 by a court for failing to clean up its mess.

Noel Wilson, of White Rock, failed to clean up after his dog in Cambridge Gardens and was proven guilty in absence at Hastings Magistrates Court last month. Wilson was prosecuted by Hastings Borough Council. He was fined £525 and ordered to pay £225 costs and a £52 victim surcharge.

In another council prosecution, Katrina Reilly, of Mews Road, St Leonards was proven guilty in her absence for having her dog off lead in Carisbrooke Road.

Hastings magistrates heard last month this was an area where dogs are required to be kept under control on leads at all times. Reilly was fined £525, ordered to pay costs of £225 and a £52 victim surcharge.

Under the Dogs (Fouling of Land) Act 1996, any person who permits a dog that is in their charge to foul any area to which the public has access is committing an offence.

The Street Wardens, Rangers and Foreshore staff enforce the Dog Control Orders (Borough of Hastings) 2008 and will issue a £75 Fixed Penalty Notice to anyone not clearing up after a dog under their control. A person is guilty of an offence unless they have a reasonable excuse for failing to comply - not knowing a dog has fouled or not having the means to clear it up e.g, a bag, are not reasonable excuses.

The council can also prosecute offenders refusing to pay Fixed Penalty Notices in the local magistrates court. Magistrates can impose fines of up to £1,000 and award costs to the council.

To report dog mess email: streetwardens@hastings.gov.uk or ring 01424 451077.