80-year-old woman jailed for holding Jack Russell up to five-year-old girl’s face who was then attacked

PUBLISHED: 08:47 03 November 2017 | UPDATED: 18:31 03 November 2017

Skyla Boldan was attacked by a Jack Rusell terrier in Estover Road, March, in June this year.

Skyla Boldan was attacked by a Jack Rusell terrier in Estover Road, March, in June this year.


An 80-year-old March woman has been jailed for a year after holding her Jack Russell up to a five-year-old girl’s face who was then attacked.

Theresa Graves, of Estover Road, was put behind bars on Friday following a hearing at Peterborough Crown Court.

She was found guilty of being in charge of a dangerous dog, banned from owning dogs for life and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £140.

The Jack Russell, called Deefa, was ordered to be destroyed.

Her son, David Graves, 41, of Estover Road, known locally as Grok, was found guilty of being the owner of a dog that was dangerously out of control.

He was given a community order for 12 months and banned from keeping dogs for life. He was also ordered to do 180 hours of unpaid work and pay the victim £85.

Skyla Boldan was attacked by the dog in Estover Road, in June, when Theresa Graves picked up the dog and pushed it into the youngster’s face saying “go on give her a kiss”, according to the girl’s grandparents.

Skyla’s grandmother Ann Boldan, said: “Skyla is getting there. We have bought her a puppy to help with dog trust issues and she is comfortable with having the puppy.

“She still won’t talk about the attack and if asked about the scar or the attack, goes quiet and hides. But she is moving on.”

Last year the dog bit the leg and hand of another young girl who lives just a few doors away from Skyla in Estover Road, and in a separate incident, tore a police officer’s trousers when it attacked him.

Skyla suffered deep lacerations to her lip and bruising and needed surgery at Peterborough City Hospital.

Her grandfather said at the time: “She was playing safely in the garden with her three-year-old sister, behind a locked gate, when the dog owner walked by.

“The woman picked up her dog, knowing it is vicious and carried it towards her then pushed it towards Skyla’s face saying go on give the dog a kiss.

“The dog snapped at Skyla’s face and bit her. The experience was traumatic for all of us.”

Detective Constable Mark Yendley said: “This case shows how important it is to keep dogs under control in public places and how seriously the courts treat incidents of this nature.”

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