Top Nevada court grants another stay for dog that killed baby

Comments Off on Top Nevada court grants another stay for dog that killed baby

CARSON CITY — In another order from the Nevada Supreme Court, the killer dog Onion has received another stay of execution in Henderson.

In one of four appeals regarding the dog that mauled and killed a 1-year-old boy, the court has temporarily prohibited Henderson officials from taking any action against the dog. The ruling overrides other appeal decisions in which the court refused to delay the dog’s death.

Chief Justice Michael Cherry and Justice Mark Gibbons have signed the order granting a temporary stay “until further order of the court.” They said their order is in effect until parties have time to consider any motion opposed to the stay.

The Lexus Project, a New York nonprofit group formed to protect dogs, is waging the legal battle to save the dog and place it in an animal sanctuary in Colorado.

Elizabeth Keller, the dog’s former owner, signed over her 6-year-old, 120-pound Mastiff/Rhodesian mix to animal control in Henderson after it killed her grandson, Jeremiah Eskew-Skahan.

But the Lexus Project says Keller signed ownership to it. Henderson officials maintain they are the rightful owners.

The boy was at his grandmother’s house to celebrate his birthday on April 27 when he crawled toward Onion to pet him. The dog grabbed the boy by his head and started to shake him.

The youngster died at University Medical Center from the injuries.

This case has bounced back and forth between the Supreme Court and Clark County District Judge Joanna Kishner, who last Thursday refused to grant a new stay of execution.


Fate of killer dog discussed with Nevada judge

Comments Off on Fate of killer dog discussed with Nevada judge

“Just got one thing to say, what the hell was a toddler doing on the floor, with a 120 pound mastiff-Rhodesian ridgebackdog???”

LAS VEGAS— The fate of a 120-pound dog that killed a toddler at home in Henderson was being discussed Friday at a meeting involving a Nevada judge, city attorneys and lawyers for a New York-based animal rescue group that wants to send the animal to a sanctuary outside Denver.

Clark County District Court Judge Joanna Kishner was being asked to reconsider a May 11 ruling giving Henderson city officials the go-ahead to euthanize the animal as vicious. Kishner said at the time the Lexus Project didn’t have legal standing to take possession of the 6-year-old mastiff-Rhodesian ridgeback mix named Onion.

No immediate decision was expected Friday on the request, court spokeswoman Mary Ann Price said.

The situation has drawn intense interest and an appeal to the Nevada Supreme Court, which issued an order this week halting any action against the dog pending Kishner’s ruling. The animal is healthy and being kept at an animal control shelter, Henderson police spokesman Keith Paul said.

Henderson officials took ownership of the dog from the child’s grandmother on April 27, minutes after the fatal mauling of the 1-year-old boy. Family members later said the dog reacted suddenly when the toddler grabbed its fur to pull himself to a standing position.

The family later said in a statement that ownership of the dog had been turned over to Henderson animal control officers, and family members would no longer comment on its future.

Rescue group head Robin Mittasch submitted documents to the court saying the grandmother didn’t know what she was signing when she gave up ownership to the city, and that she wanted the animal to go to the Lexus Project.

Lawyer Kathy McCarthy, representing the Lexus Project, said the grandmother’s move gave the rescue group a legal basis to take the dog.

Kishner didn’t publicly release a time for Friday’s closed-door meeting. Lawyers for the Lexus Project of Oceanside, N.Y., did not respond Thursday and Friday to messages.

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