Fall River families plan to fight pit bull ban

Ordinance restricts pit bulls, any dogs that look like pit bulls
Fall River families plan to fight pit bull ban

Families in Fall River say they plan to file a federal lawsuit over an ordinance they call discriminatory.

John Schwartz and his family think the Columbia County village’s law restricting pit bulls or any dog that looks like one is unfair.

They have been in a battle with police and village officials since April.

They called police after their daughter was bitten by a neighbor’s dog. Officers showed up and explained to the family that their own dog, Bailey, a Shar-Pei mix, fell under the ban because it looked like a pit bull.

They gave the Schwatz family a $187 ticket, and said the animal could no longer live in the community. Since then, Bailey has been living with a family in Illinois.

“The dogs get a bad rap, and it’s not the dog’s fault. It’s the people’s fault,” Schwartz said.

Fall River resident Maddie Buchdad said her dogs can’t stay at her home either.

“It should be animal for animal, not a certain breed does this or a certain breed does that,” Buchdad said. “It’s obvious discrimination to the full extent.”

They want the community to create a breed-neutral ordinance.

News 3 contacted the Fall River village attorney, but he declined to comment on pending litigation.