Las Vegas Sun

September 21, 2014

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Talks under way in dog attack case

The alleged owners of two pit bulls that attacked a 7-year-old boy in February have a July 2 trial date in North Las Vegas Municipal Court, but could resolve the case today during a pretrial meeting between the defense lawyer and prosecutors, a court official said Thursday.

Delbert Douglas and Mickey Williams have been charged with owning a vicious animal, having a vicious animal at large, being responsible for a vicious animal attack and not having animal licenses or vaccinations for pets, all misdemeanor charges.

The pair pleaded not guilty to the charges on May 13, Court Administrator Debbie Lamb said.

According to police, dogs belonging to Douglas and Williams attacked Austin Bechtel on Feb. 23 while he played with two friends outside his home in the 400 block of Villa Espana. A neighbor with a baseball bat fought the dogs off Bechtel, but not before the boy was seriously injured.

Bechtel's wounds required more than 100 stitches and he underwent several surgeries, including one to repair a skull fracture caused by the dogs.

Douglas and Williams, who have since moved from the neighborhood, were arrested April 20. They were released two days later after posting $10,000 bail each.

Authorities killed the dogs on March 11.

Attorneys for the city and Douglas and Williams were scheduled to meet this morning in court to discuss the case. The case could be settled during the meeting, Lamb said.

The meeting was a routine pretrial meeting and the defendants were not required to attend, she said.

City attorneys handling the case and Andrew Leavitt, the attorney for Douglas and Williams, did not return telephone messages left Thursday.

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