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Owner accused of striking mail carrier after dog pepper-sprayed

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A postal worker who pepper-sprayed a dog in attempt to prevent an attack was taken to the emergency room after the canine's owner was accused of repeatedly striking him, police said. 

The dog's owner, Anthony Wayne Stevens, 54, 2920 Camelot Lane, was arrested on a charge of battery as a Level 6 felony. A Level 6 felony is the lowest felony classification in Indiana under a new system that went into effect July 1.  

At 9:50 a.m. Saturday, the 55-year-old postal worker, who police declined to identify, was delivering mail in Stevens' neighborhood north of the Williamsburg Apartments in northeast Columbus, police spokesman Sgt. Matt Harris said. 

The postal worker told investigators that when two large dogs approached him on Camelot Lane, he clipped a container of pepper spray on his mail pouch, which prompted a man later identified as Stevens to begin calling for the dogs, Harris said.

When one of the dogs — a Labrador-mix — charged at the postal worker, the mail carrier sprayed the animal one time with the pepper spray, Harris said.

Neighbors told police the dog owner immediately confronted the postal worker. As their argument began to get heated, Stevens is accused of striking the mailman in the face with a leather leash, Harris said. 

For more on this story, see Wednesday's Republic.

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