The Final Ruling on Mickey the Pit Bull
Phoenix Municipal Court Judge Deborah Griffith has ruled that Mickey, the pit bull that mauled 4-year-old Kevin Vicente earlier this year, will spend the rest of its life in a no-kill animal shelter that was opened in 2000 by Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
Mickey Declared “Vicious”
At a hearing a month ago Griffith declared the dog vicious but decided that he be neutered and defanged rather than euthanized. Mickey was placed under the care of the Lexus Project, a New York-based animal-rights group. The judge gave the group 30 days to find a rehabilitation center or shelter for the dog, along with strict instruction that the dog could not be put up for adoption.
Polarizing Case of Mickey the Pit Bull
The case touched off a national social media debate about mercy, blame, and animal violence. Animal advocates feel both the dog and boy are victims and that the baby sitter watching the child was acting negligently by letting him play near the animal. It was also argued that the owner fostered the dog’s aggression by keeping the dog chained up. Donations and gifts flowed in for Kevin Vicente. The 4-year-old was left with a broken eye socket and jaw, leaving him facing months, if not years, of reconstructive surgery ahead of him
Sheriff Arpaio Rescues Mickey
Sheriff Arpaio is known for his immigration enforcement efforts as well as past practices of housing jail inmates in tents. He testified he was confident that Mickey would be housed at the shelter for the rest of the dog’s life. When the judge pressed Arpaio on what would happen to the animals in his shelter if a future sheriff were to end the shelter program, Arpaio answered that any sheriff who would close such a program wouldn’t get re-elected.
Veronica Lee, a supporter of the dog, said Mickey will be able to enjoy more freedoms in Arpaio’s shelter than at another county facility where he’s currently being held.
“Today, justice was served for Mickey,” she said.
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Source: The Huffington Post, Mickey, Dog Who Mauled 4-Year-Old, To Be Given New Home, April 29, 2014
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