MIRROR Online: LONDON, England, By Susie Beever – A man has been told to expect jailtime after admitting owning the dangerous dogs which savagely killed a pensioner in her own home.

Lucille Downer, 85, died from neck wounds suffered when she was attacked by two American bulldogs owned by Darren Pritchard, 44, in Rowley Regis, West Midlands, in April 2021.


Pritchard has pleaded guilty at Wolverhampton Crown court on Tuesday to being in charge of the two dogs.

He also admitted to drug offences in relation to producing cannabis at an address in the street where the 85-year-old was attacked, suffering a fatal neck wound.

Lucille Downer suffered a neck wound in the fatal attack

Lucille Downer suffered a neck wound in the fatal attack – WMP / SWNS

The 44-year-old, of Smethwick, West Midlands, admitted possessing cannabis with intent to supply and producing the drug.

The judge told Pritchard: “You have had the courage to plead guilty to these matters and you will get appropriate credit (for pleading guilty) in due course.

“But they are clearly serious matters which cross the custodial threshold so you should be under no illusion as to the likely sentence.”

Great-grandmother Lucille was attacked after the dogs got into her garden on Good Friday in 2021.

Police cordon at the scene

Police cordon at the scene – SWNS

Neighbours reportedly rushed to her help but tragically the 85-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene.

A tribute issued by her family at the time described her as “a mother, grandmother and great-grandmother” who worked as a cook at a nearby care home.

Top Feature Photo: Darren Pritchard arrives at Wolverhampton Crown Court – Image: PA