ARREST MADE IN DOG MAULING THAT CRITICALLY INJURED WOMAN: LAS VEGAS (AP) — A woman was arrested Monday after police say her four mixed breed pit bulls attacked a 65-year-old Las Vegas woman last week, leaving her critically wounded and in danger of losing her arm and eye.
Jesse Vonstaden, 29, was accused of willful disregard for the safety of people and having dangerous or vicious dogs, Las Vegas police said in a news release. She also had warrants for minor traffic offenses.
There was no listed phone number for Vonstaden, and it wasn’t clear if she had an attorney who could comment on the allegations.
The dogs mauled the woman Friday morning outside her home in northeast Las Vegas after somehow getting loose from a nearby yard, Officer Larry Hadfield said.
When officers arrived, the victim was on the ground, Las Vegas police said in a news release Monday afternoon. A person with a baseball bat had chased the dogs away, police said.
The dogs were still in the area, running around. One dog was shot and killed after charging toward police, the news release said. The other three dogs were corralled and given to animal control.
There had been two previous complaints about Vonstaden’s dogs, Hadfield said.
The victim, whose name was not released, was in critical condition at a hospital, he said.
DISTRICT ATTORNEY TO REVIEW CASE OF GIRL KILLED BY PIT BULL: WEST MIFFLIN, Pa. (AP) — A district attorney will review the case of a 2-year-old girl who was fatally mauled by a family’s pit bull in a Pittsburgh suburb.
Allegheny County police and the medical examiner’s office say the dog attacked Taylynn Devaughn inside a home in West Mifflin at around 8:45 p.m. Sunday.
Police say the girl lived in nearby Forest Hills and was visiting when attacked. They haven’t said whether the girl was related to or friends with the people who owned the dog.
The dog is being quarantined for at least 10 days. It isn’t immediately clear what will happen after that.
County Lt. Andrew Schurman says a district attorney will determine whether charges are warranted.
3 DEAD, 2 OFFICERS WOUNDED IN SHOOTING IN GEORGIA: DECATUR, Ga. (AP) — A former law enforcement officer who had lost his job because of allegations of domestic violence shot his ex-wife to death and wounded a sheriff and deputy Sunday at a home in northeastern Georgia, authorities said.
Anthony Giaquinta, 41, fatally shot his ex-wife, Kathy Giaquinta Smith, at the home in Clarkesville, Russell Andrews with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation told reporters Monday. The body of Steven Thomas Singleton, 45, was found outside the home, and authorities believe Giaquinta shot him as well.
Giaquinta initially fled but was later found dead outside the home. Authorities believe he died from a gunshot wound suffered in an exchange of shots with a sheriff’s deputy, Andrews said.
“We think it is a long-simmering domestic dispute that had been going on between Anthony Giaquinta and Kathy Giaquinta Smith,” Andrews said. “We do think it involves the personal relationship between the two of them and possibly her relationship with other people.”
INMATE TO PLEAD GUILTY TO WRONGLY ADDRESSED THREAT TO OBAMA: PITTSBURGH (AP) — A convicted child molester has agreed to plead guilty to mailing a threatening letter from jail to President Barack Obama — albeit to the wrong address.
The plea deal was revealed Monday at a status conference on a federal indictment returned last February against Joseph Savage, 35, of West Leisenring.
Savage was in the Fayette County Prison awaiting trial in October 2012 when he sent the letter threatening to “torture and murder” the president and “to kill and to kidnap and to inflict bodily harm” on an unspecified member of the president’s family.
The letter was mailed to 1400 Pennsylvania Ave. in Washington. The White House, at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., received it anyway and turned it over to the U.S. Secret Service.
Defense attorney Jon Pushinsky said after Monday’s court appearance that Savage has agreed to plead guilty on March 4 in exchange for a 2½-year federal prison sentence.
Savage already is serving 12½ to 25 years in the molestation case and three other cases. Under the deal, at least half — or 15 months — of Savage’s federal sentence will run concurrently to the state sentence, meaning he’ll spend no more than 15 additional months in prison for threatening the president, Pushinsky said.
The U.S. attorney’s office in Pittsburgh has not disclosed the contents of the letter, beyond the description contained in the indictment.
Savage’s state sentence stems from his convictions for molesting a 9-year-old Uniontown girl, exposing himself to a 10-year-old girl in neighboring North Union Township, damaging a prisoner waiting room at a district judge’s office and sending a threatening letter to the state police trooper who charged him.
If Senior U.S. District Judge Maurice Cohill Jr. accepts the plea bargain, he must decide only whether Savage will receive any additional credit toward the second half of his federal sentence while he’s in state prison.
PROSECUTOR: INMATE KILLED CELLMATE SO HE’D HAVE HIS OWN CELL: CLEARFIELD, Pa. (AP) — A prosecutor says an inmate killed his cellmate at a Pennsylvania prison because he wanted his own private cell.
Forty-five-year-old Lawrence Peterson Jr., formerly of Easton, will now serve a life sentence on top of the 40- to 80-year term he had been serving for a violent robbery.
Clearfield County District Attorney Bill Shaw planned to pursue the death penalty but decided to skip the trial after Peterson said Friday he was willing to plead guilty to first-degree murder and take a life sentence for the Aug. 2, 2013, beating of 59-year-old William Keitel.
Shaw says it would have been a “terrible waste of tax dollars” to push for a trial.