Regent’s Park dog attack: Elderly couple ‘nervous leaving the house’ after ‘racially-aggravated assault’

Regent's Park

Regent's Park - Credit: Archant

Two pensioners were attacked by a “pitbull-type” dog in an alleged racially-aggravated assault in Regent’s Park.

The incident took place on August 13 when Primrose Hill couple Madeleine and Eddie were out for an early-morning walk with their bichon frise dogs and two women were walking a large dog behind them.

Madeleine said: “She seemed to deliberately let this dog off its lead to chase us. She chased us too. I can’t remember much, I was too busy saving my dogs.

“It was an American Pitbull type. I was using my hands to get the big dog away.”

Both pensioners – each in their 70s – were, Madeleine said, physically attacked. Her husband suffered cuts and abrasions, while she needed hospital treatment for a bite wound.

Madeleine said she was also racially abused.

A witness who stepped in to stop the attack was also allegedly racially abused, and has called for a “dogwatch” scheme to be set up to stop banned breeds of dog being walked in the area.

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Weeks later, the couple feel unsafe in Regent’s Park and both Madeleine and the woman who stopped to help said they were disappointed after two separate attacks, the Royal Parks management have delayed responding to the reason why they have not expedited any safety notices prohibiting pitbulls entering the park without wearing muzzles (as per the Dangerous Dogs Act).

Safety signages are not within the police’s remit.

Madeleine said: “I’m still very nervous going out with my two dogs. If these women are not caught, I don’t know how I will have the courage to walk in Primrose Hill or Regent’s Park.”

The incident occurred when Madeleine and Eddie were out at around 8am.

Madeleine thanked the passer-by for saving them: “If she hadn’t come I don’t know when it would have stopped. Anything could have happened. We were so scared.”

A police spokesperson said they had been called to “reports of a dog attack and a racially aggravated assault” and that while enquiries are ongoing, there have been no arrests yet.

Witnesses or anyone who knows the identity of the two women involved are asked to call police on 101, quoting CAD 1840/13Aug.

The police said officers had not approached a suspect when pointed out to them as this woman was not with the dog, and at the time their “primary focus” was on the dog attack and protecting public safety.

A spokesperson for the Royal Parks said: “We are sorry to hear of this incident and are glad the couple involved were not seriously hurt, although we understand they were very shaken by this.”

They added it was a matter for the police.