Trial underway for Montrose man who owns Dutch the dog

MONTROSE, Colo. - A trial has begun for a U.S. Army veteran over whether his service dog is a vicious animal.

A municipal judge in Montrose had fined Jeremiah Aguilar for having a vicious dog after his service animal, Dutch, bit its former owner in 2012 as she tried to break up a fight between Dutch and another dog.  The woman was hospitalized as a result of her injuries.

Aguilar appealed to county court. He contends Dutch was provoked by the woman before he bit her.

Dutch initially was ordered to be destroyed, but Aguilar skipped town for a time in order to protect his dog. He registered Dutch as a service dog after the attack.

The Montrose Daily Press reports ( ) a jury of three women heard opening arguments Thursday in county court on Aguilar's case. Jurors will decide whether the dog was vicious and whether it was properly contained its owner. They won't decide Dutch's fate.

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