Pit bull kills dog in Blackhawk, owner at large

Authorities are looking for the owner of a white pit bull that killed a papillon on Thursday night while the smaller dog was on a walk in Blackhawk.

Around 6 p.m. on the 2300 block of Holly Oak Drive in the Hidden Oaks neighborhood of Blackhawk, owner Linda Zercoe was walking her two papillions, Sienna and Indigo, when the pit bull charged off a property and attacked and severely injured Indigo.

Zerco rushed Indigo to the veterinarian who was later euthanized. The county's animal services department was contacted the next day.

Dan Barrett, deputy director of Contra Costa County Animal Services Department, said his department contacted the owner of the property from which the pit bull came, but the homeowner did not own the dog.

"There are a couple generations of people living there and we believe the owner is a good friend of one of the people that is living there," Barrett said, adding that the homeowner has been cooperative.

Barrett said the county is also working with jurisdictions in El Cerrito, Hayward and Danville for the responsible party.

"We have a strong belief that we know we want to get in contact with them and are avoiding it. We will continue to pursue the leads that we have," he said.

If the pit bull's owner is found, there might be a public hearing to determine whether the dog is a dangerous or potentially dangerous animal under Contra Costa County animal ordinance 416. The owner can also apply for a permit to own such an animal.

The owner also has a civil liability between themselves and the dog owner, said Barrett. The county is also looking at criminal charges, though Barrett was unable to give details.

"From my perspective, this happens too often because this shouldn't happen at all. People have a level of responsibility," Barrett said. "There are greater criminal statues for things that dogs do whether it's to other dogs or to people. It's just not ok for a dog to kill another dog or bite a person.

"Our bottom line concern is public safety…we want people to speak up." Anyone with information on this incident may call Animal Services at 355-8300 or, if after-hours, the Sheriff's communication center at 646-2441.


Like this comment
Posted by TL Nelson
a resident of Danville
on Apr 27, 2011 at 12:20 am

Dog owners should be accountable for the actions of their pets. Any person who is irresponsible enough to own a pit bull should suffer the full consequences of the law when their animal injures, harms or violently kills others. I hope this dog's owner is found and brought to justice.

What is wrong with people who own these vicious dogs?

Like this comment
Posted by Razmatanian
a resident of Danville
on Apr 27, 2011 at 8:19 am

Jessica, did they really euthanize the veterinarian? I feel really bad about Indigo, but your writing skills made me laugh.

Like this comment
Posted by HO Resident
a resident of Blackhawk
on Apr 27, 2011 at 10:15 am

I live in this neighborhood...
Does anyone know the actual address where this pit bull attack occurred?

Like this comment
Posted by C. R. Mudgeon
a resident of Danville
on Apr 27, 2011 at 11:58 am

I like how it is stated that there are "a couple generations of people" living at the house. I'm assuming that this means more than just parents and their children, which would constitute "a couple of generations"... Possibly the quoted person meant to say that there is more than one family represented amongst the home's residents.

Possible violation of HOA covenants?

It is also interesting that it is so hard to determine who the dog owner is. In any case, the homeowner will be responsible for any civil court remedies.

Like this comment
Posted by Ty Bluford
a resident of another community
on Apr 27, 2011 at 12:24 pm

pit bulls should be banned for the private citizen ownership; plain and simple!

Like this comment
Posted by walker
a resident of Blackhawk
on Apr 27, 2011 at 2:43 pm

To HO resident: I also live in HO, and I walk several miles every day. About 2 weeks ago I was accosted by a black pit bull at the same location where this incident occurred. It is the unkempt house by the back gate with all the old vehicles in the driveway.

Like this comment
Posted by HO resident
a resident of Blackhawk
on Apr 27, 2011 at 4:02 pm

I knew it! I just had a feeling it was that house.

They have really cleaned it up over the last few months... I wonder if they are planning to sell!

Like this comment
Posted by Greg Landeau
a resident of Walnut Creek
on Apr 27, 2011 at 4:49 pm

In over 20+ years of teaching in Redwood City--the majority of families who owned pitbulls did so to protect their Mexican drug cartel stashes. Stealing (oh shock!) small dogs to train the pits on was common as well. Of course everyone was on the free gov food program, people!

Like this comment
Posted by Dan
a resident of Blackhawk
on Apr 28, 2011 at 11:57 am

I take frequent walks at Diablo Vista Park, and around the area, and I have seen a white pit bull there as well.

The pitbull lives at the apartments across the street. Villas at Monterosso. That pitbull acts agressive when I saw it.

I have seen the pitbull taking walks behind the storage on Camino Tassajara, on the little trail there.

Probably this was the dog, and of course they cannot locate it because it does not live in the houses, but in the apartments. They probably have just locked the dog in the apartment until everyone forgets about it.

The pitbull is white, has scars like it is a fighting dog, wears no collar, and I'am pretty sure he ain't registered.

The owner drives a tinted black Acura sedan. I saw the pitbull getting out of the car in Safeway on Camino Tassajara. The owner is a white fat, short, man with tatoos.

They better catch the pitbull before he mauls a child, elderly, adult, or another dog.

Like this comment
Posted by MWB
a resident of San Ramon
on Apr 29, 2011 at 1:21 pm

Feel free to read or peruse this:

Web Link

Like this comment
Posted by MWB
a resident of San Ramon
on Apr 29, 2011 at 1:26 pm

...and more on the same here:

Web Link

Like this comment
Posted by anonymous
a resident of another community
on Apr 30, 2011 at 10:09 pm

My small dog was attacked by a pit bull that jumped a six-foot fence. She only had a bite mark on her neck, I was able to fend the pit off with a metal pole, which was in the back of a nearby pick-up, which I had thrown my three dogs into, but the one who got bit jumped backed out. Any dog that attacks should be taken by animal control, let the 'owner' pay to get it out, and any dog that kills another should be put down! Why should we (and our dogs) be afraid to take a walk on our own streets.

Like this comment
Posted by HO Resident 2
a resident of Blackhawk
on May 1, 2011 at 5:25 pm

Pitbulls get a bad rap because of the media. Pitbulls are bred to be dog aggressive but not aggressive to humans. They did this so that humans could literally stick their hands in the pitbull's mouth while they were fighting another dog and it wouldn't bite. Don't blame the animal, blame the owner that left their pitbull unleashed. There are plenty stories of cuddly golden labs that bite people yet those stories are glossed over.

Like this comment
Posted by Osage Park Jogger
a resident of Danville
on May 3, 2011 at 9:20 pm

I agree that there are plenty of ill mannered aggressive dogs besides pit bulls. I frequently go to Osage Park with my medium sized dogs and they have been attacked by small toy breed dogs more often then I can remember. The thing is that they only lose a clump of fur before the owner can yank the pint size bully away. Also the unsocial golden retrievers & labs (which there are unfortunately quite a few) usually have responsible owners who keep them on a leash & can control them.
The point is that a "pit bull" has jaws that can inflict extremely severe damage with one bite and is genetically hardwired to fight requiring owners that are more knowledgeable & responsible then someone who owns a golden retriever. Also, when a dog is in the middle of a fight I don't think it would be able to reliably distinguish who it was biting.

Like this comment
Posted by Laury
a resident of another community
on Feb 21, 2013 at 11:10 pm

All dogs need training along with their owners. I've had 2 sweet dogs killed by neighbor dogs. An akita killed my pekingese and a German shepherd killed my chihuahua within an 8 year span. No more dogs for me. We do not hear reports of this happening unless it's a pit bull. What good is it to spend time training a sweet dog to have it brutally killed by an untrained one? I realise I need training to confront an attacker. Please, post any info for timid dog owners.

Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.


Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: *

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields

A different perspective on Spotorno Ranch development
By Tim Hunt | 1 comment | 260 views