Grieving Mother Demands Stronger Penalties for American XL Bully Attack that Claimed Son’s Life

Emma Whitfield, the grieving mother of Jack Lis, who tragically lost his life to an American XL Bully in November 2021, has expressed her disappointment and anger over the “pathetic and insulting” jail terms given to those responsible for the dogs.


The incident has sparked public concern, with 74% of people calling for a change in the law to impose tougher sentences on individuals in charge of out-of-control dogs.

Insufficient Sentences for Those Responsible:

The incident that claimed young Jack Lis’ life involved an American XL Bully named Beast, owned by 19-year-old Brandon Hayden, who fled the scene of the attack.

Both Brandon and 29-year-old Amy Salter, who allowed the dog to stay at her home, were charged with being in charge of a dangerously out-of-control dog.

They both received jail sentences, but Emma Whitfield believes these sentences were inadequate and insulting to the memory of her son.


Brandon received just over four years at a young offender institution, while Amy was sentenced to three years in jail.

Emma’s Criticism and Hope for Change:

Emma, hailing from Caerphilly near Cardiff, expressed her frustration at the court’s sentencing, feeling that it did not reflect the gravity of their actions.

She argues that the judge’s hands were tied due to sentencing guidelines, and she hopes that the government will take action to review and amend these guidelines.

Emma emphasizes that no sentence can ever truly compensate for the loss of a loved one, but she believes that tougher penalties for such offenses are necessary to discourage others from acting irresponsibly with dangerous dogs.

The Mirror’s Campaign for Action on Dangerous Dogs:

The tragic case of Jack Lis is not an isolated incident, as numerous fatal dog attacks have occurred in recent years.


In response to a spate of these attacks, The Mirror launched the Time for Action on Dangerous Dogs campaign in October of the previous year.

The campaign aims to raise awareness and advocate for more stringent measures to address the growing issue of out-of-control dogs.

Shockingly, last year alone, there were nearly 22,000 cases of dogs causing injury due to being out of control in England and Wales, a significant increase from 2018.

A Disturbing Trend of Fatal Dog Attacks:

In March 2022, a two-year-old boy named Lawson Bond lost his life to a dog attack, followed by the death of 17-month-old Bella-Rae Birch due to a family dog attack in Merseyside.

These tragedies were followed by fatal attacks on three-year-old Daniel Twigg, three-month-old Kyra King, and four-year-old Alice Stones.


Additionally, in July 2022, a 43-year-old woman named Joanne Robinson was killed by one of her two Bully XLs at her home.

The Urgent Need for Change:

The frequency and severity of dog attacks underscore the urgency of addressing this issue.

Emma Whitfield’s call for stricter penalties for those responsible for out-of-control dogs resonates with the growing public concern.

The rising number of fatal incidents demands immediate action and comprehensive reforms in dog ownership regulations and sentencing guidelines to ensure the safety of the public and prevent further tragedies.


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