Global News has learned that a $1,034 ticket handed out to a Montreal homeless man because of his dog, will be withdrawn.
“At the time of the interaction, the dog’s owner did not give the officer the certificate that confirmed his dog is not a pit bull-type,” Montreal police wrote in a statement to Global News.
“The canine expert is known by the City of Montreal and confirmed the dog is not a pit bull-type.”
Guylain Levasseur said he was baffled after receiving the ticket because his dog, Misha, is actually an Dogo Argentino.
Under Montreal’s controversial animal bylaw, she is not considered a pit bull-type.
“I cannot pay the ticket,” said Levasseur.
“I’m a volunteer. I work 50 to 60 hours for homeless people. I got my welfare only and for now, I live in my truck.”
Levasseur told Global News he registered Misha with the City of Montreal earlier this year and received a document confirming she is not a pit bull-type.
According to Levasseur, he showed the document to police, but was told to “fight it in court.”
Alexandre Paradis, founder of Montreal homeless advocacy group SOS Itinérance said homeless people like Levasseur have no way to pay this kind of ticket.
“Seeing as he’s homeless, if he contests the ticket, where will he get his mail?” said Paradis.
“In three or four months, he can’t present himself in court, he will be found guilty by default, and then the police will stop him, seize his dog and then what? They’re going to euthanize the dog?”
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The SPCA said science proves it is practically impossible to determine what a dog’s breed is just by looking at it.
“This case really highlights what a mess this bylaw is, in terms of deciding which dogs are actually targeted. It’s something that even we, at the SPCA, don’t even understand,” said SPCA lawyer Sophie Gallard.
Late this afternoon, SOS Itinerance’s Alexandre Paradis called Global News after receiving word from the police officer involved that the ticket will be withdrawn by the end of the week.
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