The dog that mauled its owner to death in Canberra’s north last year previously had its ear severed by a machete in a violent home invasion, police say.
Today officers revealed that in March last year two men wearing balaclavas cut the pitbull’s ear and fired a gun in the house on Molesworth Street in Watson.
Seven months later Tania Klemke, who lived in the home, was attacked and killed by the same dog — her pet Simba.
Police were forced to shoot the animal dead after it attacked them as they rendered aid to Ms Klemke.
At the time the ACT Government confirmed that the dog had attacked before and been injured in a previous incident.
Today police asked for the public’s help to identify four men seen in the area at the time of the aggravated burglary on March 17, 2017.
Officers said about 10:50pm on the Saturday night two men entered the home and were involved in an altercation with Ms Klemke’s son.
During the struggle her son’s head was allegedly put through a glass window, resulting in a laceration.
Ms Klemke was home at the time but was not injured.
Her dog allegedly attacked one of the men, who cut its ear with a machete.
Officers said a gun was also fired into the home by one of the offenders.
Station Sergeant Harry Hains said the motive for the attack was still under investigation, but he saw “no cause for concern for other residents of the street or the broader Canberra community”.
He would not comment on the temperament of the dog or whether it changed after the violent incident.
“The unfortunate death of Tania Klemke is not linked to this incident, albeit the premises was the same premises,” he said.
Police believe the two men involved in the home invasion were not acting alone and had assistance from others.
Officers said later that night the men were seen acting suspiciously in the suburb of Casey in a grey-coloured Holden Astra.