Friday, May 15, 2009
UPDATE 05/14/09: A Caldwell County Grand Jury indicted the mother of a 2-year-old boy this week who was attacked and killed by a chained up pit bull. Melissa Miller, 24, faces charges of injury to a child and criminally negligent homicide, both felonies, in the March 26 death of Tyson Miller, according to a Caldwell County press release. The grand jury returned the indictment after hearing testimony from Miller and her attorney, Matt Jones of Austin, the release said.
The destruction this chained pit bull has brought upon Melissa Miller and her family cannot be measured. Yet the actions of those involved cannot be excused either. DogsBite.org urges parents to keep their children away from chained dogs, especially if the animal is a pit bull, rottweiler or other powerful breed. Do not ever agree to "watch" one of these dogs for a friend or relative nor allow your children to visit the home of a friend or relative that owns a dangerous breed either.
The mother was later sentenced to two years in a state jail in connection to her son's death.
03/31/09: Mother Shares Story
Melissa Miller told CBS 42 reporters that she woke up at 6 am that morning to dress her 6-year old daughter, Valerie for school. Valerie's great-grandmother picked her up about an hour later. Miller said she forgot to deadbolt the door at that time. Exhausted after what she calls an irregular work schedule, Miller said she went back to sleep and woke up around 12:30 pm to find Tyson gone. She also said that Valerie and Tyson had only been staying at the trailer for five days.
Miller told us the owner of the pit bull was an acquaintance of one of the friends living in the house. Miller just moved into the mobile home two weeks before the attack. She said Valerie and Tyson had only lived there for five days, because they spent spring break with their grandmother.03/30/09: Mauling Victim Identified
“I knew there was a dog back there chained up, but I never knew what type of dog, or that it was pregnant or that it was a female.” - Katherine Stolp, CBS 42, March 31, 2009
Authorities have released the name of the mauling victim. Deputy Luling Police Chief David Creed identified the toddler as 18-month old Tyson Miller, who had been staying with his mother, Melissa Miller, for about two weeks at a home in Luling, where the attack occurred. Creed said the child awoke before the adults that morning and went into the back yard where the female pit bull was chained. When the mother and her boyfriend awoke (about 12:30 pm), the boy was dead.
About the same time the couple began staying at the new residence, Miller and her boyfriend agreed to "watch" the pregnant pit bull for a "friend." The owner of the pit bull, a family friend named Amanda Ayala, signed a voluntary euthanasia order for her pit bull. Police officials have not filed any criminal charges yet. The case will now go to the Caldwell County District Attorney, whose office indicated to reporters that the case will go before a grand jury as soon as possible.
03/28/09: A Recipe for Disaster
Carol Escobedo said her two brothers were living at the trailer where the attack happened. She said one of her brothers -- whom she did not identify -- "had been keeping" the pit bull suspected of attacking the boy for a couple of weeks for a friend. The core ingredients of a fatal dog attack in this case are overwhelming: 1.) 0-2 year old child 2.) Pit bull 3.) Chained 4.) Pregnant 5.) New dog (at location just a few weeks) 6.) Adult "watching" the dog for a friend. Roy Mendiola, who lives down the street, said the dog, a grayish pit bull, was usually behind the trailer on a long chain.
03/27/09: Pit Bull Pregnant and Chained
New information has been released about the fatal pit bull mauling of a young boy reportedly named Tyson. One neighbor, Carol Green, said she saw the horrific attack with their own eyes. Police said the chained pit bull attacked the boy in a wooded area, where two other dogs still remained Thursday night. "There were some adults present (during the attack)," Luling Police Chief, John Cochran said. "But who and their relationship with the kid, I have no idea," he said.
“It was pretty bad, the dog, the pit bull mauled the baby and kept going for its head until he killed him,” said neighbor Carol Green ...03/26/09: Owner of Dog Remains Unclear
Friends of the family walked in and out of the mobile home hours after the attack, only a few, would stop to briefly talk with us.
“It was somebody else’s dog,” an unidentified man told the swarm of media.
“The dog was pregnant so they thought it would be fine,” Escovedo said.
The friends also told us about the deceased two year old boy, who they called Tyson. - Katherine Stolp, CBS 42, March 26, 2009
Luling, TX - Authorities believe a 2-year old boy was killed by a pit bull in the backyard of his home. Shortly after noon on Thursday, 911 dispatchers received a call about a dog bite. When Luling police officers arrived at the home in the 900 block of Hackberry, they found the child's body with a female pit bull dog next to him. Investigators say the bite marks on the boy are consistent with being attacked by a dog. An autopsy is planned to determine the exact cause of death.
The boy and the female pit bull were reportedly found in the boy’s backyard, but police aren’t certain if this was the family’s dog. Family members told reporters that they "didn't know" where the animal came from and it was not theirs. Currently, police are interviewing family members to learn more -- including the identity of the 911 caller. The animal has been picked up and is now in the custody of Luling animal control officers. Police continue to investigate the boy's death.
01/15/09: 2009 Fatality: Cheyenne Peppers, 5-Years Old, Killed by 3 Family Pit Bulls
12/20/08: 2008 Fatality: 2 Pit Bulls Attack, Kill 60-Year-Old Rubidoux Man
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| 3/27/2009 3:43 AM |
Another report said the uncle who owns the trailer had taken the MAULSPAWNER in over two months ago. Legally, he should be the harborer.
Similiar incidents in South Carolina...(Unsupervised toddler wandering outside into the chained Canine IED) have produced manslaughter charges..We'll see what happens in the Pit Mauling capital of the world..Texas!
| 3/27/2009 5:21 AM |
How long are the good people of Texas going to stand for this?!
The child is the 13th Texan killed by a Pit Bull in just over 3 years!
The preemptive Anti-BSL law is clearly not working!
| 3/27/2009 5:44 AM |
I came across this comment from an "Ex" dog fighter turned noble Pit bull breeder who thought he would set everyone straight about this manslaughter:
"First off you got to support those dog breeders and dog show people cuz they are the ones who stop the laws on bsl and tying up your dogs. If you go to those websites you will learn about how the media is paid by peta and humane society to take dogs away from poor people and so that nobody can own a dog in america. I dont fight pits no more but i still breed em and i make everyone who gives me money to sign a paper saying they wont use dogs for illegal actions and dog fighters support them who stop laws because they are keeping us free so we got to support them so that lies like this one wont stop us. go to nopittbullbans.com and pitbullchat.com and responsible dog owners and dogpolitics, and dog laws and give them your support because in the bible god said man could have dogs to do with what they wants and dog fighting is in the bible it is gods law"
Breeding dogs for killing other dogs and gambling on them is the Lords work?!!!Don't think so...Satan's work maybe!
| 3/27/2009 10:09 AM |
Yo Tombstone! You're maker is falling under forfeiture laws. Now that is GOD's WORK!
County seeks property of acquitted Pit Bull breeder
| 3/27/2009 12:14 PM |
Anonymous who posted the Tombstone dog man comment
I don't think Tombstonedogman exists!
That "comment" is full of AKC breeder propaganda, including the usual blather about humane groups (because they push for things like breeder licensing, which the AKC breeders obviously don't like!)
I suspect that Tombstonedogman's is a faked comment made to sound like a dog man hoping to get these guys to send their money and support to the "dog show people" also known as the AKC!
It is AKC breeders who run most of the "responsible dog owner" groups (AKC has "responsible dog owners" days which are lobbying against laws AKC doesn't like!) and the dogpolitics site is run by an AKC breeder.
AKC breeders also hide behind those two other pit bull sites.
The dogmen have never liked the "dog show people" (ie, nasty strange old ladies who look down on the dogmen!) but the AKC breeders want the support and money to fight against laws like anti-chaining laws and bsl and breeder licensing, dog limits, etc
What you read in that cooked-up "comment" is the AKC hard at work lobbying WITH dog fighters and trying to attract more.
The AKC is directly involved with dog fighting lobbies and people, though they try to hide it. Hence the vague "pit bull chatty" forums where the true breeding and moneymaking interests are hidden.
This is AKC ALL THE WAY!!!!!
| 3/27/2009 12:17 PM |
And what is worse, anonymous who posted Tombstoneman comment, is that BEST FRIENDS and NATHAN WINOGRAD (the No Kill fanatics) are now working with these very same pit bull breeder and fighter lobbies!!
They sold out animals for the lure of cash!
| 3/27/2009 4:57 PM |
"There is an INSANE amount of bible thumping among dogmen."
Nothing new about selective interpretation. The Ku Klux Klan, Hitler, and radical Muslims have all contrived justifications with religious fulcrums.
All cults fail. The pit bull dogma will go down in flames as well.
| 3/28/2009 12:30 PM |
There's nothing riskier than a pregnant pit bull around a 2-year old! There needs to be a Federal Law to STOP THE BREEDING of pit bulls. It may be the only way to put a choke hold on these maulings AND dogfighting.
| 3/31/2009 5:53 AM |
"I hate myself!...I hate myself!...I hate myself!"
How many texas kids have been killed in the past few years? She knew....
| 3/31/2009 12:07 PM |
I agree, she knew. In her heart, she knew. Despite the fact that everyone said the dogs had never shown any aggression -- she knew in her heart that she was taking a chance by having that dog. I'm sure she just hoped for the best and wanted to believe everyone who told her that the dog was a sweetheart, and not to believe the media. And now, her son is dead, and she will always have that horrible image of her mangled ripped-apart son in her mind. I pray she can find solace by speaking out against pitbulls.
| 3/31/2009 12:47 PM |
It will be hard for her to speak out. That woman is undoubtedly headed to jail on child neglect charges. It's hard to believe any Texas jury would sympathize with her. Stumbling out of bed at noon pretty much nailed her coffin shut. The question is, where is the boyfriend in all of this (and is he the FATHER of the child)? The earlier reports said that HE was the one that agreed to "watch" the dog. It appears he was the brother of the person that owned the mobile home where he, Tyson and Melissa were staying. Secondly, where is the mobile home owner in all of this? Neither of the two brothers have been named by authorities (or have spoken to the media).
"Carol Escobedo said her two brothers were living at the trailer where the attack happened. She said one of her brothers "had been keeping" the pit bull suspected of attacking the boy for a couple of weeks for a friend."
| 4/01/2009 2:22 AM |
"Miller said her family is now working on a bill to help prevent pit bull attacks."
What would the bill include? Don't have a CHAINED, PREGNANT, PIT BULL near a young child? Each of these aspects alone is a highly dangerous situation! Combine them and the "I hate myself!" routine is understandable but in no way negates the deadly toll.
| 4/01/2009 4:31 AM |
"He was the reason I got up every morning"....."I didn't know what kind of dog it was"
She must have a Lawyer...seems obvious that she is trying to influence the potential Jury pool.
| 4/02/2009 11:46 AM |
"He was the reason I got up every morning"
What about her 6 yr old? Was she not a reason to get out of bed in the morning? Was she not a reason for breathing? Or at 6 yrs old, was she considered old enough to fend for herself?
This doesn't feel right to me. I have never seen a mother get on tv so quickly after their child was killed.
| 4/03/2009 9:11 PM |
There are great parents and not so great parents. This 6 year old everyone refers to was a sweet and loving little girl. Never a moment without a smile on her face! I agree that her mother should of been awake and yada yada... but i feel so bad for this little girl. I knew her and saw her daily.
Please pray that God grants her peace and a great life!
| 5/15/2009 1:14 AM |
Chaining is one of the lead indicators of trouble
First because chaining makes dogs even more aggressive
Second, because it is the most common kennelling technique of dog fighters
and next, because it is used as an alternative when the dog is too aggressive to be in the home
Then the whole community suffers
| 5/15/2009 1:57 AM |
I'm glad to see serious charges filed in this case. What kind of parent sleeps in until after NOON when they have a toddler in the house? Utterly disgraceful, and sadly, a child paid with his life. I hope the older girl has a safe place to go once her mother is behind bars. Where is the father in all of this?
| 5/15/2009 5:24 AM |
In my area, the law considers an animal yours if you feed it and bring it (or allow it) onto your property.
Yet another group of idiots breeding pit bulls for profit. They would've put an ad in the paper for pit bull puppies for sale and made about $2,000. Then bred her again. And again. And again.
| 5/15/2009 11:37 AM |
I am so relieved to see this poor excuse of a mother charged with manslaughter. Isn't this what the pit nutters are always crying for? Punish the deed, not the breed. I am anxious to see their comments about her arrest. I fully expect them to think it harsh and ridiculous.
| 5/16/2009 12:19 PM |
Phillips has written a post about this fatal attack:
"I feel that these charges raise serious and difficult questions about responsibly for dog attacks. Let’s assume, for the purpose of argument, that this mother knew that a pit bull was chained or tethered outside the mobile home where she was staying. Let us also assume that she had no reason to think that her son was adequately confined. The issue is whether she had the requisite degree of knowledge that the chained or tethered pit bull presented a significant danger to her son. If the prosecutor cannot prove some knowledge of this danger, it is doubtful that Ms. Miller could be convicted of these crimes."
Read full post here: