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Denver's pit bull ban remains after council fails to override mayor's veto

The City Council vote of 8-5 was one vote short of what was needed to override Hancock's veto of the bill.

DENVER — The Denver City Council on Monday didn't have enough votes to override Mayor Michael Hancock's veto of a bill that would allow pit bulls to be licensed in Denver.

The council needed nine votes for the override, and the vote was 8-5.

RELATED: Denver mayor Michael Hancock to veto repeal of pit bull ban

RELATED: The Denver City Council voted to allow pit bulls, but the mayor hasn't decided whether he'll sign it into law

The City Council on Feb. 11 voted to repeal the pit bull ban that has been in place for three decades.

Three days later, on Feb. 14, Hancock vetoed the repeal.

RELATED: Everything you wanted to know about dog bites in Denver

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The Denver ordinance says, “Pit bull breeds (American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, or Staffordshire Bull Terrier) are banned in the City and County of Denver.”

The pit bull ban was enacted in 1989, after 20 people were attacked by pit bulls in a five-year span, according to a 2005 article by Kory A. Nelson, senior assistant city attorney for the City and County of Denver, which outlined the history of the ban.

Hancock explained his veto of the bill created by Councilman Chris Herndon in a letter that was released shortly after his decision.

“…I do not believe this ordinance fully addresses the very real risk to severe injury that can result from attacks from these particular dog breeds, especially should they happen to a child.” Hancock said in the letter.

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