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Parole denied after dog attends hearing

Louis then

Louis now

An Alabama state board denied parole this week to a man convicted of spraying a dog with lighter fluid, setting him on fire and beating him with a shovel.

The star witness at the hearing? The victim himself — Louis Vuitton, an 8-year-old pit bull who, now in the care of a local couple that adopted him, still bears burn scars over much of his body. The dog was led into the hearing room, consenting to being petted along the way.

The board voted 3-0 to deny early release to 23-year-old Juan Daniels of Montgomery, who was sentenced in 2009 to nine years and six months in prison, according to the Associated Press. The sentence was a record in Alabama in an animal cruelty case.

It’s believed to have been the first appearance by a dog at an Alabama Board of Pardons and Paroles hearing. “I don’t recall every having one here before,” said Cynthia Dillard, the board’s executive director.

Daniels’ family and supporters aruged that he had been sentenced far more harshly than criminals who harm human beings.

After the September 2007 attack on the dog, the Montgomery Humane Society got as many as 50 calls a day about the case, some from other countries.

The dog was named “Louis Vuitton,” in honor of another abused dog, named “Gucci,” whose torture case in Mobile in 1994 led to passage of “Gucci’s law,” which made animal cruelty a felony in Alabama.

More than 60 law enforcement officers, animal rights advocates and other supporters of Louis crowded into the hearing, where Montgomery County District Attrney Ellen Brooks asked parole board members to make Daniels serve his entire sentence.

She said he tortured the dog, which belonged to his mother, because he was angry at her for not letting him use the car.

Daniels will be eligible for another parole hearing in July 2012.

Comments

Comment from gailmariaforrest
Time September 16, 2010 at 5:47 pm

OMG, It’s a good thing I wasn’t in that court room I would have jumped up and strangled the man with my bare hands. That’s if I could stop crying long enough to move. My heart is broken but thankfully the dog recovered. He deserves that sentence in my unhumble opinion. These wonderful creatures who love us to a fault do not ask for much – as in the case of my “Beefy Boy” he only asks for endless amounts of food – it’s a lab thing. I believe we need to read these stories but they are oh so hard to see. I can send you the blog I wrote about Michael Vick on my site http://www.gonepausal.com I think you would agree with me.

I am very glad to see the pitbull in the video has found a home.

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