The Edmond Sun

August 26, 2013

Judge sends Edmond dog attack case to trial

Attorney: ‘He’s not guilty’

Mark Schlachtenhaufen
The Edmond Sun

EDMOND — A man accused of ordering his dog to attack his ex-girlfriend is not guilty, his attorney said Monday.

Oklahoma County District Court Judge Glenn Jones has ordered Christopher Reid Birchmier, 33, of Edmond, to stand trial on five felony charges — two counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, one count of domestic abuse by strangulation, one count of maiming and one count of domestic abuse (assault and battery).

One count of domestic assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and one count of domestic abuse (assault and battery) were dismissed at the request of the state, according to court records.

Trial proceedings begin Nov. 4. In December 2012, the defendant entered a plea of not guilty. Frank Kirk, Birchmier’s attorney, said he plans to file a motion in court to dismiss.

Kirk said during his investigation he has learned his client did not order the dog to attack the victim, that the dog was not a vicious animal and that there are multiple discrepancies in testimony.

“I really do believe the guy is innocent,” Kirk said, repeating a previous assertion he made during the interview.

Kirk said he also takes issue with the “ridiculously high bond,” which meant his client has remained incarcerated in the county jail. Birchmier’s bond was set at $100,000, according to jail records.

The charges were filed in November 2012, when police officers alleged the defendant assaulted the victim and ordered his dog “Butter,” a pit bull, to attack her.

At about 12:30 p.m. Nov. 13, Police Officer Jonathan Cramer was dispatched to the 3000 block of Baird Drive on a domestic abuse call, according to the report filed by Cramer.

When the officer arrived, the victim was being treated by EMSA and was in the rear of an ambulance, Cramer stated. While she was being treated, she said she was beaten and strangled by Birchmier who commanded the dog to attack her, Cramer stated.

An EMSA paramedic told him the victim suffered multiple facial lacerations, had strangulation marks on her neck and bite wounds on her legs, Cramer stated. Birchmier also sought treatment for wounds from the dog, Cramer stated. | 341-2121