Army veteran allegedly assaults police and RSPCA inspector after breaking dog out of shelter

Shane Van Duren and his dog, which he is accused of breaking out of the RSPCA.
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Shane Van Duren and his dog, which he is accused of breaking out of the RSPCA.

A former Australian soldier allegedly assaulted police and an RSPCA inspector after breaking his companion dog out of a shelter. 

Shane Van Duren, 41, is accused of cutting through three fences at the RSCPA's Weston Creek headquarters on Tuesday night to free his Belgian shepherd, which had been seized due to alleged neglect.

The ACT Magistrates Court heard on Thursday the animal was a companion dog to assist in treating his post-traumatic stress disorder.

Van Duren then posted on social media that he had "sprung" the dog.

Police and an RSPCA inspector went to his Deakin home on Wednesday, but Van Duren allegedly refused to surrender the animal, and became involved in a violent scuffle.

He is alleged to have punched a police officer, causing a cut that required stitches, and choked the RSPCA inspector.

Officers called for back-up and subdued him with capsicum spray and batons.

Van Duren was charged with property damage, trespass, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, resisting arrest, and making threats to kill.

Magistrate Beth Campbell refused his bail application in court on Thursday morning, on the likelihood he could harass or endanger the welfare of others.

The court heard Van Duren had received counselling for his PTSD through Veteran Affairs, but details were not available in court.

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Ms Campbell said she had been concerned by his "extraordinary and explosive loss of control".

"Something is wrong for this man to act with such aggression and ferocity," she said.

The magistrate said she could not grant bail until she had seen further information on whether the accused was a man who could abide by bail conditions.

Ms Campbell also questioned why the RSPCA inspector had become involved in the alleged altercation rather than allowing police to handle the situation.

Van Duren was listed to reappear in February.

 - Canberra Times

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