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01st Apr 2022

Father whose dog mauled 12 day old baby to death jailed for 4 years

*Content warning for descriptions of injury 

The baby died as a result of severe trauma to his chest and abdomen.

A UK dad has been jailed for four years after his “ferocious” dog killed his newborn son.

The baby was just 12-days-old when mauled by the animal, owned by Stephen Joynes, at his home in Doncaster South Yorkshire, in 2020.

The child, Elon Jase Ellis-Joynes, had between 40 puncture wounds and two lacerations to the torso and abdomen, the court heard. He was taken to Doncaster Royal Infirmary but tragically died that afternoon.

Joynes admitted a charge of being the owner of a dangerously out-of-control dog, causing injury resulting in death.

The baby’s mother, Abigail Ellis, was also due to stand trial but prosecutors but the charge was dropped after Joynes took full responsibility.

He was sentenced to four years in prison on Thursday.

Richard Thyne QC, prosecuting, told the court Ellis had been upstairs using the toilet while Joynes played in the garden with the children at the time of the incident.

One of Ellis’ sons noticed the dog was missing and went into the house to investigate. There, he found dog was found inside standing and growling over the injured baby.

Mr Thyne described death was “a tragedy waiting to happen”, adding that Joynes “should never have kept this dog”.

He told Joynes: “You knew the dog was unmanageable and had vicious characteristics.

“You had made no attempt to socialise the dog with children – all you did was kick and hit the dog and put it outside.

“You were an utterly inadequate dog owner and failed to protect your infant son.”

The court heard the dog had been put down following the incident. Joynes was also forbidden from owning any dogs for 15 years.