Associated Press Published

State Supreme Court Overturns Pit Bull Destruction Order


The West Virginia Supreme Court has overturned a decision ordering the destruction of a pit bull that bit a child.

The court says the Wayne County Circuit Court erroneously adopted a presumption that pit bull breeds are vicious, dangerous or a public health hazard.

Tuesday’s ruling says West Virginia’s law regarding vicious dogs doesn’t contain a breed-specific assumption.

The decision came in the case of a pit bull named Tinkerbell that bit an 8-year-old boy on March 31, 2014.

The Supreme Court says facts in the case don’t support the circuit court’s conclusion that Tinkerbell is vicious or dangerous.

A circuit judge acquitted Tinkerbell’s owners of charges that they knowingly owned or kept a dog they knew was vicious or dangerous. But the judge later ordered Tinkerbell’s destruction.