Detroit Man Charged With Murder Of Girl Mauled By His 3 Dogs

He was ordered held on a $2 million bond

WWJ News
August 22, 2019 - 3:53 pm

photo: WWJ/Charlie Langton

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DETROIT (WWJ) - The owner of three dogs that fatally mauled a child in Southwest Detroit has been charged with murder. 

Pierre Cleveland, 33, was arraigned in 36th District Court Thursday in connection with the death of 9-year-old Emma Hernandez. 

The little girl was riding her bike in an alley in the area of Central Avenue and Smart Street, Monday afternoon, when three dogs -- described as pit bulls or pit-bull mixes -- got out of a Cleveland's backyard and attacked her.

Prosecutors allege that Cleveland knew his dogs were dangerous, yet left them loose and unsecured in the yard when he left to go shopping. 

An investigation, it's alleged, revealed that the fence that lined the yard was damaged and not secure, and that a garage side door that was open and led to the alley where Hernandez was attacked. 

Cleveland, who is charged with Second Degree Murder, Dangerous Animal Causing Death and Involuntary Manslaughter, was ordered held on a $2 million.

He remains in the Wayne County Jail awaiting a probable cause conference set for Aug. 30. 

“It is horrible to imagine what Emma went through as she was being mauled to death by vicious dogs allegedly owned by the defendant," Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said. "It is high time that the City of Detroit shines a light on the owners of these dangerous animals that sometimes roam and wreak serious havoc -- none worse than what happened here.”

The victim's father, Armando Hernandez, said Cleveland was warned about the animals prior to the deadly attack.

GoFundMe account has been set up for the Hernandez family.