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Richard H. Polsky, Ph.D.

Website author

Expert Witness for the defense

Animal Behavior Counseling Services, Inc.

Los Angeles, CA.

Unanswered questions about animal behavior

A number of important behavioral questions were not answered. The questions listed below may have impacted the outcome had they been addressed and developed more fully during trial.

Q. Just because Bane and Hera were Presa canario dogs, did this make them dangerous by nature?

A.Absolutely not. In fact, the prosecution did not …

Q. Did the defendant’s rescue Bane and Hera from an abusive situation on Janet Coumbs’ farm?

A.Surely, this must have been the case. Basically…

Q. Was Bane’s bite to Noel’s hand reflective of a dog with a vicious nature?

A.Hammer argued in his closing statement that Noel …

Q. Were Bane’s and Hera’s displays of aggression towards dogs reflective of their aggressive nature towards people?

A.The science of animal behavior tells us that dog …

Q. What was the significance of the fact that despite Bane and Hera having several opportunities to severely attack a person prior to the mauling of Whipple, they never actually did so?

A.The fact that Bane and Hera never attacked …

Q. Prior to the mauling of Whipple, were Bane’s and Hera’s displays of aggression, as reported by the Bad Dog witnesses, predictive of dogs who would viciously attack or perhaps kill a person?

A.The answer to this question should only take …

Q. Were the “warnings” the defendant received sufficient to make them realize that intervention was needed?

A.Throughout trial, Hammer repeatedly stressed …

Q. What steps should the defendants have taken to lessen Bane and Hera’s aggressive tendencies?

A.Assuming that Noel and Knoller knew of these …

Q. Why did Bane go berserk?

A.Frequently during trial Ruiz implied that Knoller …

Q. Was Knoller on top of Whipple during the attack?

A.Only Knoller knows this for sure. She has claimed …

Q. Was it possible for Knoller to stop Bane once he started attacking Whipple?

A.Regardless of the physical position of Knoller …

Q. Were the circumstances of Whipple’s mauling similar to the circumstances found in other dog-related fatalities?

A.One could not have reason the predicted that …

Q. Did the defendants have sex with their dogs?

A.What were the supposed acts of bestiality …