The Express and Star report:

The figures have been revealed after West Midlands Police said the force would be compensating the family of a 10-year-old boy who was attacked by one of its dogs while playing in a back garden in Oldbury.

The force has recorded 988 bites in the past five years. The figure includes suspects and criminals.

Inspector Russ Evans from the force’s dog unit said: “People routinely tell us that the dogs are a welcome sight on the region’s streets – this is why West Midlands Police has more police dogs than any other force in the region and the force has national credibility with regard to the quality of dogs it provides for policing.

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I am a journalist and author. I am a staff writer at the UK edition of WIRED magazine and in 2015 my book, Freedom of Information: A Practical Guide for UK Journalists, was published. I created FOI Directory in 2012.