Couple guilty in dog attack trial

Widow's arm severed by 70-pound pit bull

By Paul Venema - Reporter
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SAN ANTONIO - After four hours of deliberations, a jury returned a guilty verdict Monday afternoon in the trial of a couple facing dangerous-animal attack charges.

Alphonso Miles-McCloud was sentenced to four years in prison and his wife Stanyelle will be on probation for the next 10 years.

The couple's 70-pound pit bull, Bully, attacked Doris Mixon-Smith as she worked in her front yard flower garden on March 6, the woman told jurors.

The attack, which prosecutors described as a mauling, was so severe that Mixon-Smith's left arm was severed above the elbow and her face was punctured by dog bites.

"What this is, it is a referendum on community responsibility," prosecutor Daryl Harris told jurors during closing arguments. "It is a question about the obligation we all owe to each other." 

Defense attorney Kenneth Baker countered, saying, "Your job today is to look at each and every element to determine whether there is reasonable doubt. This is not a referendum, it is a trial."

According to witnesses, the dog escaped from Alphonso and Stanyelle Miles-McCloud's backyard, which had a gate that prosecutors said was not adequate to restrain the dog.

The dog was killed by police following the attack, which prosecutors said was not provoked by Mixon-Smith.

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