Attack over dog

A man used a claw hammer in a nasty assault in Albury’s QEII Square on an old acquaintance he falsely accused of stealing his dog.

Anthony James Savage then threatened to kill the man if he did not return his white Staffordshire terrier.

Savage fronted Albury Local Court this week to answer charges relating to the attack earlier this month.

Magistrate Tony Murray pointed out to Savage, 40, of Grafton Street, how the man he attacked was “basically a good Samaritan” who had made the effort to take in the dog in order to find its owner.

“Quite clearly there was a degree of planning,” Mr Murray said.

Savage pleaded guilty to charges of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and armed with intent to commit an indictable offence.

He appeared contrite in front of Mr Murray, who asked why he would commit such an act.

“I was very upset at the time, your honour.”

Mr Murray then asked why though he had taken the claw hammer to QEII Square “in broad daylight”.

”Because I just wanted to scare him, I didn’t want to hit him with it.”

Savage was convicted and placed on a two-year good behaviour bond and fined $600 on each of the two charges.

Police said Savage and the victim had known each other for about six years, having met during a rehabilitation program.

But they had not seen each other for about 12 months before the incident happened earlier this month.

It was about 6pm on October 8 when a woman the victim knew knocked on the front door of his Wyse Street unit.

She was concerned a dog was wandering the area uncontrolled, so the victim agreed to take it inside until the owner could be found.

Another man came to the door to claim the dog was owned by someone who lived in Englehardt Street.

The next morning Savage went to the victim’s home about 9am, telling him he had spoken to a woman who said she had dropped the dog into his house.

But police said the victim told Savage of the other man who took the animal.

“At this time the accused became very angry, yelling and screaming that he was going to kill the person if he didn’t get his dog back.”

The victim later said he was off to meet a friend in QEII Square.

Savage turned up about 90 minutes later, pulling the claw hammer from his back pack and striking the victim to the top of his head and leaving a 2-centimetre cut.