6-year-old Matthew Logan Johnson was mauled to death Wednesday night by one of six Rottweilers found at a residence in suburban Richmond, Virginia
No wonder another child has been fatally mauled in the State of Virginia. It has an official policy of protecting irresponsible dog owners.
Virginia adheres to the ancient and inhumane “one-bite” rule. In this state, as in old England and a minority of 19 other American states, every dog gets “one free bite” — one free mauling or killing of a human being. However, if the owner or another person caused the accident by being negligent or breaking a law, such as a leash law, then that person will be held legally liable.
To make matters worse and ensure its place in the 18th century, Virginia also follows another ancient and inhumane doctrine, called the “contributory negligence” rule. It says that a person who is even one percent responsible for an accident has no legal right whatsoever to recover compensation for medical bills or anything else.
All things considered, this is a state that applies outdated and cruel law to accident victims of all sorts — and thereby tells its less law-abiding citizens that they need not fear being held responsible for their negligence. Virginia will continue to see horrible dog attacks upon people until it brings its laws into this century.
The state needs to eliminate the “one-bite” rule as a deterrent to having dangerous dogs. People must realize that they will have to pay the price for being irresponsible dog owners.