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Dog pack murder: Man makes first court appearance

May 31, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
A man charged in the dog pack murder of a woman in Littlerock made his first court appearance on Friday afternoon.

Jackson was arrested Thursday after detectives say blood found on four of his dogs matched the blood of 63-year-old Pamela Devitt, who was mauled to death by a pack of pit bulls early this month.

Animal control took eight of Jackson's dogs -- six of them pit bulls -- out of his home within hours of the fatal mauling. Jackson was arrested that day for drug possession, but now he is facing murder charges in the death of Devitt.

Although this kind of murder case is rare, prosecutors believe they have a solid case against Jackson.

"The theory is implied malice, and it's just a theory," said prosecutor Samantha MacDonald. "I think it is kind of a unique situation. I don't know that it's been done very often clearly. There was a case previously in Northern California that was similar."

MacDonald was referring to the fatal dog mauling trial more than 10 years ago in which one of the owners of two vicious dogs in San Francisco was convicted of second-degree murder after the dogs mauled a neighbor to death.

Acquinette Washington says she and Jackson have been friends for years, and she believes he is innocent.

"I'm here to support him because this was out of his hands, and he had no control over this. Those weren't even his dogs, and I know that for a fact," Washington said.

She said the dogs were strays, and that dog dumping was common in their neighborhood. But detectives made it clear that they believe the dogs belonged to Jackson.

"He's responsible for those dogs," said Lt. John Corina of the L.A. County Sheriff's Department.

Jackson remains in custody on $1 million bail.


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