DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Police and prosecutors will meet again at the end of the month to determine whether charges will be filed in a deadly dog mauling.
Police presented their evidence in the case Monday, but prosecutors determined it wasn’t enough yet to bring charges.
Klonda Richey, 57, was killed by two dogs that lived next door to her East Bruce Avenue home.
We asked a legal expert questions about the case.
A spokesperson with the prosecutor’s office said they are likely waiting on test results to be completed before moving forward in this case.
A law professor at the University of Dayton, who is not affiliated with this case, spoke to 2 NEWS about the problems prosecutors may face in pressing charges for Richey’s death.
Prosecutors say they need more evidence before filing any charges against Richey’s neighbors, the owners of the dogs.
“If they can’t prove that, regardless of what the outcome is, they can’t prove their case,” said Professor Tom Hagel, University of Dayton.
The biggest deterrent may be just how clearly the state law defines who is to blame in a case such as this.
“Keep in mind that prosecutors are limited by the language of statutes,” Hagel said. “The crime in Ohio has to be defined by a statute or a municipal ordinance. If it’s not defined by that then it’s not a crime.”
There could be some charges that could come easily.
“Right there, I’m seeing the dogs running around up over in her property.”
2 NEWS showed Hagel surveillance footage Richey gathered in an attempt to protect herself.
Instantly, the law professor pointed out one of the charges the dogs owners might face, watching the dogs roam around Richey’s property.
“He’s on notice that those dogs are there and, apparently, he’s clearly on notice that these dogs may have threatened her or attacked her or whatever. Consequently, since he was on notice and didn’t do anything, sounds like recklessness to me.”
It is still unclear exactly what charges investigators are pursuing in this case.
Hagel did mention prosecutors have plenty of time getting all the evidence together for charges are pressed.
They will revisit this case at the end of the month.
- Related: Prosecutors need more time
- Related: Mauling victim’s surveillance video released to 2 NEWS
- Related: Animal resource director: Mauling death could not be prevented