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A frightened mother was trying to protect her baby from a dangerously out of control dog, in what a court heard was not the first time it had attacked.

Hamilton Sheriff Court heard this week how the mum was bitten as she protected her young child.

And now the reckless dog owner has been told his pet is in danger of being put down after the latest incident.

Keith Smith, 55, had previously been warned over the behaviour of Star, his American Staffordshire bull terrier.

Despite the concerns, Star escaped from Smith’s ground floor flat in Wishaw , Lanarkshire, before sinking its teeth into the woman.

She had been out walking in October 2018 when she spotted the animal running towards a child’s buggy and blocked its path.

A police investigation saw Smith face allegations the dog was dangerously out of control, despite warnings since 2014.

During a trial at Hamilton Sheriff Court, he claimed he had not been ­responsible for the dog at the time of the attack, blaming a friend.

But Sheriff Alasdair MacFadyen found Smith guilty after hearing the dog was unattended when it attacked the mother.

Prosecutors have asked that Star be destroyed and Smith banned from keeping animals.

Sentence was deferred until next month when the dog’s fate will be decided.