A DOG-OWNER has been handed a £500 fine for allowing his dog to foul a football pitch in Stone.
Stafford magistrates heard Nigel Green’s black Labrador was seen defecating on the grass behind one of the goal posts at the town’s Westbridge Park after being let off its lead.
Simon Turner, prosecuting on behalf of Stafford Borough Council, said: “The man did not pick up the faeces, he carried on walking with the dog towards the park exit.”
Mr Turner said a council enforcement officer issued Green with a fixed penalty notice for £75 which he failed to pay despite a reminder letter a month later.
“He was subsequently served with a court summons in July although ten days later the council received a payment of £70 - £5 less than the amount required,” said Mr Turner.
Green, 47, of Newcastle Road, Stone failed to attend court to face the charge under the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act in January and was found guilty in his absence and fined £100, ordered to pay £380 costs and a £15 victim surcharge.
After the case on Wednesday, Councillor Frank Finlay, cabinet member for environment and health, said the council had an excellent response to a campaign earlier in the year from concerned members of the public and responsible dog owners who wanted to help “clamp down on this disgusting environmental crime”.
“Not only is it unpleasant but as we have seen in the case of a little girl in Manchester it can result in very serious and life changing illness,” he said. “I hope the amount this man will have to pay will serve as a warning to all other irresponsible dog owners that if you let your pet foul and don’t clean it up we will not hesitate to take action.
“All you have to do is bag up the mess and put it in to a rubbish bin.”
Details on how to report incidents of dog fouling or irresponsible dog owners can be found at www.staffordbc.gov.uk/dogs or call 01785 619402.