A woman was ordered to pay £2,000 compensation after her bull mastiff savaged and killed a tiny dog in the street.

Sonjia Hatton, 45, was also handed a community order for owning a dog which was dangerously out of control, Merseyside Police said.

The 45-year-old, of Livingston Drive South, Aigburth, was fined at Liverpool Magistrates Court on Tuesday, February 23 after pleading guilty to dangerous dog offences.

On 17 November 2020, Hatton's bull mastiff escaped from the back of a property on Livingston Drive South and started attacking a Yorkshire terrier.

The owner of the Yorkshire terrier, a man in his 60s, was knocked to the ground and suffered bite wounds to his hands and arms while trying to protect his dog.

The Yorkshire terrier was taken to the emergency vet before dying from its injuries.

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Community Policing Inspector Dave Uren said: "It is tragic that a dog owner has lost his companion in such cruel and unpredictable circumstances. While no amount of money can replace his dog, I hope the outcome in court can provide some closure on what happened that day.

"People who own or care for dogs should always make sure they are on a lead in public and should consider whether they need to be muzzled. It's also a good idea to get your dog micro-chipped so that it can always be traced if it is lost, or escapes.

"If you keep your dog in the garden, you must make sure that the fencing is properly maintained so they can't escape."

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Hatton was also handed a list of conditions which she must adhere to or face having her dog seized by police.

These include the dog needing to be walked on a double-ended lead attached to a harness and leather buckled collar and in a basket-style muzzle at all times when in a public place or place to which the public have access.

The dog must also be supervised by a 'responsible person' aged over 18 years who is able to maintain control of it at all times.

Hatton's dog must not be left unsupervised in any private place with a child aged under 18 years and it must not be left in a garden or any enclosed outside private area unless it's controlled by a lead and muzzle or the enclosed area is secured to prevent escape.

Report an out of control dog to us by calling 101 or contacting @MerPolCC on Twitter. More information about animal crime can be found at our website. Always call 999 in an emergency.