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Jun 30, 2015

Woman Walks From Manslaughter Charge

Dickie Bradley

For the past five years, thirty-one year old year Shelda Patnett has been waiting for her day in court to prove that she was not the owner of two pit bull dogs who attacked and killed sixty year old of Edmund Spain of the Tropical Park Area of Hattieville on May thirty-first, 2010. Well today, Patnett, who was charged jointly with her then boyfriend, Leon Lopez for Manslaughter by Negligence, was in court and her case concluded this afternoon. Supreme Court Judge, Troadio Gonzalez upheld a no case submission setting her free of the charge. But she is still not in the all clear, because the judge noted that she can be re-arrested and charged. The judge also informed Patnett that the D.P.P.’s office should have indicted her on an alternative charge of Causing Death by Careless Conduct, but that did not happen.  Since the court had already excused the jurors ordering them to return on Wednesday morning, they will be directed to return a formal verdict of not guilty against Patnett then.  According to Judge Gonzalez, there was no evidence to substantiate the charge of manslaughter by negligence and that there was also insufficient evidence that Patnett was the owner of the dogs.  Spain was attacked and badly bitten multiple times to the body and before his passing; he said the vicious dogs belonged to his new neighbours, Patnett and Lopez.  There was not enough evidence to establish Patnett as the owner of the dogs, says Attorney Dickie Bradley.


Dickie Bradley, Attorney for Shelda Patnett

“In order to succeed in bringing a charge in front of a jury in Supreme Court, the police must prove that Mister Edmond Staine died as a result of being bitten by the dog. That the dogs in question belong under the control of Shelda Patnett on the thirty-first of May, 2010 when the biting took place and that she was negligent because somehow the dogs were able to get out of the yard. There were about nine or ten witnesses; even the medical certificate raised some concerns, but we conceded that death must have occurred from the biting. But it could not be proven in a court of law that Shelda Patnett was the owner or the person responsible for the dogs at the time, on the thirty-first of May, 2010 because you must be the person who was responsible for you to be charged for allowing the dogs to escape. The arresting officer charged another person, a member of the B.D.F. who was a resident of the area. When the police visited with a dog instructor that person was the person who in fact took the dogs off their chains, walked them around and showed control and familiarity and lived at the residence where the dogs were. They could not, in a court of law that Shelda Patnett in fact was the owner of the dogs on the thirty-first of may, 2010 or that she was responsible for ensuring that those dogs could not escape and cause a fatal injuries to anyone.”

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