Suicide Taunt Sparks Dog Park Fight, Police Say

Argument on over dogs leads to battery and criminal damages charges against man accused to grabbing woman's sunglasses after she taunted him about his wife's suicide, police say.


A verbal argument between dog owners led to battery and criminal damages charges against a 42-year-old man who police said grabbed a woman’s sunglasses off her head and threw them.

were called to around 8:45 a.m. July 27. According to the report, the woman pushed her dog away from playing with another patron’s dog.

The woman and patron were both yelling at each other, when a man identified as Brian T. Cottrell, of Richmond, TX, reportedly stood up and yelled at the woman to control her dog.

Police said the woman yelled back and that Cottrell got into the woman’s face. Both were yelling profanities at each other when Cottrell insulted the woman’s family, reports said.

After Cottrell started insulting the woman’s family, police said she commented on Cottrell’s wife’s suicide. Cottrell allegedly placed his face several inches from her nose and said, “I’m going to rip your head off.”

Police said Cottrell then grabbed the woman’s sunglasses off her head and threw them, causing them to break. The woman called 911.

According to the report, Cottrell told police he came to the patron’s aid because the woman was yelling and being aggressive. He got in between them in an attempt to defuse the situation.

Cottrell allegedly admitted to police that both he and the woman were yelling and swearing at other. He walked away but when the woman made a second insult about his wife, he lost his temper and grabbed her sunglasses, police said.

Police said that Cottrell insisted he never touched the woman’s head, only her sunglasses.

The woman told police that she knows Cottrell and the patrons from prior incidents at the dog park, and believed they would lie to police to support Cottrell. The woman’s son also corroborated his mother's story, reports said.

Both patrons gave a similar statement to police, saying the woman was the original aggressor, but that Cottrell did grab her sunglasses. The patrons told police that the is aware of the woman because there have been complaints about her and her aggressive dog, police said.

After interviewing all of the parties involved, police said the woman was adamant about signing complaints for battery and criminal damages against Cottrell. Police said the woman could tell them how much her sunglasses cost.

Cottrell has a court appearance on Sept. 7.

KittyKat August 13, 2012 at 05:24 PM
It's kind of sad when it's the dogs that have bad owners. Whatever the story happens to be, all the humans misbehaved.
scouter August 20, 2012 at 08:36 PM
A friend of mine went to the dog park last week and her dog got bitten pretty badly - enough to shake her up... Don't know what the Vet bill will be, but I bet no one bothered to follow up on this one either...
Julie Roberts August 22, 2012 at 03:40 PM
The Oak Lawn Dog Park is a good idea for responsible pet owners. My 8 month old Golden puppy and I have been there the last two nights after work and it's been a happy crowd with quite well-behaved dogs and owners. We've had 12-15 dogs running around and having a ball for an hour or so. I do know this woman's dog and she's very well behaved - we've never had a problem with the dog. I've never seen this so-called "Breakfast Club" but most park districts do patrol and survey the areas often to make sure all goes well. Anyone who uses an air-horn on a dog's sensitive hearing needs a lesson in dog park etiquette and should be prepared for a bite from a scared dog. There should be a community effort but no self-policing by a few cronies. What a shame - this is for the dogs, not the people. Finally something for those without children and it's self-imploding? Shame, shame, shame.
Julie Roberts August 22, 2012 at 03:41 PM
Lilly - most dog owners DO have children.
anthony August 22, 2012 at 05:23 PM
wait is the guy from texas a member ? 250 fine if not... If he is a member does his dog have all the proper documentation ?? like 4 pages worth


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