Friday, March 25, 2005 A Spotsylvania County woman, whose three dogs allegedly attacked and killed her elderly neighbor, was freed Wednesday by posting a $10,000 bond. Dianna Large, 36, received one felony charge of involuntary manslaughter and three misdemeanor charges in an indictment issued last week.
In her first appearance before a judge, she answered Circuit Court Judge William H. Ledbetter questions with simple “Yes sir.” and “No sir.” responses. The short hearing, held Thursday, formalized the charges against her. The involuntary manslaughter charge, a first in the severity of punishment being sought on a dog owner in the Virginan state of USA, carries a maximum penalty of 10 years.
State procecutor Wiliam Neely said that Large knowingly let her three Pit Bull dogs run free, and that an animal control agency person had warned her to keep them under better control. She also a violated a county ordinance requiring owners of dangerous dogs to post a warning sign to visitors. The prosecution also noted that none of the three male dogs were neutered.
The Animal Control Department of Virginia maintains a dangerous dog registry. It contains a list of owners whose dogs are deemed dangerous to society. The link to the registry was moved to a more prominent position on the county web page following the attack.