Professional dog walker Nikki O’Donoghue was seen spinning her lead like a lasso before hitting Emma Clay while she was walking her seven pugs in Liverpool’s Cricketers Park
This is the shocking moment a dog walker hit a woman in the face with a lead in a row at a park.
Professional dog walker Nikki O’Donoghue was seen spinning her lead like a lasso before striking Emma Clay, the Liverpool Echo reports.
The victim was walking her seven pugs when she was allegedly set upon in Cricketers Park on Wednesday afternoon.
Mrs O’Donoghue said she lost her temper and hit Miss Clay after she allegedly launched “verbally abuse” at her.
The encounter took place after Miss Clay, 36, saw Mrs O’Donoghue arguing with another man and went over to try and defuse the situation.
Miss Clay, who claims she was left with a black eye after the attack, told the ECHO she knew both parties a little from walking their dogs in the park.
But the pug owner said Mrs O’Donoghue, owner of Diamond Doggy Care, accused her of “siding” with the man.
She claims things became heated, which led Miss Clay to begin recording with her phone.
Two sequences of mobile footage, recorded by both Miss Clay and by a witness, show Mrs O’Donoghue stood by her van and then re-entering the park to confront Miss Clay.
She attempts to grab the phone out of Miss Clay’s hands before twirling a dog lead and eventually whipping it into her face.
Mrs O’Donoghue then left the scene in her van.
Speaking to the ECHO today, Mrs O’Donoghue said she accepted striking Miss Clay with the lead, but claimed she “lost her temper” after being “verbally abused”.
Merseyside Police confirmed officers are investigating reports of an assault and have invited a woman to attend a voluntary interview.
A spokeswoman said: “It was reported that, following a verbal altercation in Cricketers Park, near Sandown Lane, a woman was hit in the face with a dog lead.
“The female suspect then made off in a white Renault van.
“The victim suffered minor injuries to her face and was left shaken by the incident.
“Patrols attended the scene and, following enquires, a woman is due to voluntarily attend at a police station for interview by officers.”
Detective Inspector Chris Saidi said: “We will not tolerate violence in this manner.
“If you were in the park on Wednesday afternoon and saw or heard anything then please get in touch with us, either directly or anonymously, to help us with our enquiries.”
Miss Clay told the ECHO: “It was horrible, it really was.”
She added: “I suffer with a lot of anxiety and it was so upsetting.
“I feel like I can’t go out of the house in case I bump into her.”
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Miss Clay describes her pugs, named Buddy; Eric; Rico; Macy; Button; Beau and Coco, as her “babies” after cancer treatment left her unable to have children.
But now she says she feels she cannot go into the park to walk her pack.
The attack also left her with a black eye, she claims.
Miss Clay says she saw Mrs O’Donoghue arguing with the man about his dog allegedly growling at one of several she was walking.
However she noticed the man was inside a fenced off area used for puppies or dogs that are not suitable to be too close to other dogs.
Miss Clay says she suggested that Mrs O’Donoghue should not get too close to the fence, which she claims caused her to get angry.
The man who was arguing with the dog-walker told the ECHO Miss Clay approached to “defuse” the situation.
The ECHO put the allegations to Mrs O’Donoghue.
She accepted striking Miss Clay with the lead, but claimed she “lost her temper” after being “verbally abused”.
Mrs O’Donoghue confirmed she would be attending the voluntary interview with a solicitor.
Merseyside Police asked anyone who witnessed this incident or with any information to contact Merseyside Police social media desk via Twitter @MerPolCC or Facebook ‘Merseyside Police Contact Centre’ with reference 21000559171.