3 months after deadly dog attack, legislation in victim’s honor heads to Gov. Abbott’s desk

Ramon Najera died after a West Side dog attack on Feb. 24

SAN ANTONIO – Dangerous dog legislation passed by the Texas House and Senate is expected to be signed into law by Gov. Greg Abbott in the coming weeks.

There is no closure for Raymond Najera as he mourns his 81-year-old dad, Ramon Najera. The elder Najera died in a dog attack on Feb. 24 on the West Side.

Ramon Najera’s wife and two others were also injured.

“I think it’s a win, not just for me, but I think it’s a win for the community of San Antonio. It increases the penalty, but it doesn’t bring anybody back,” said Raymond Najera.

Raymond Najera said the new legislation is a step in the right direction, but he wishes it had come sooner.

“The dogs had already bitten two people before that. Maybe the second time getting bitten, the consequence would have been there, and ACS would have taken more action,” he said.

House Bill 4759, also called the Ramon Najera Act, allows residents to file complaints anonymously. Animal Care Services will still take a person’s information if the complaint goes to court and a witness needs to be identified.

The law will also make it easier for ACS to remove dangerous dogs.

“If they can see or identify specifically the attacker or the attackee -- the vicious, dangerous dog -- they can remove the dog at that point. They don’t have to wait for an affidavit,” said State Sen. Jose Menendez.

Menendez helped push the House bill, authored by state Rep. Liz Campos, through the Senate.

Raymon Najera, who is still grappling with the loss of his dad, takes pride in the accomplishment.

“‘You’re not forgotten. People around us did support us.’ That’ll be my next step -- to go to his gravesite and tell him what happened,” he said.

About the Authors:

John Paul Barajas is a reporter at KSAT 12. Previously, he worked at KRGV 5 in the Rio Grande Valley. He has a degree from the University of Houston. In his free time, he likes to get a workout in, spend time on the water and check out good eats and drinks.

Joe Arredondo is a photojournalist at KSAT 12.