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Pitt Bull Owner Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison
Pitt Bull Owner Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison
Three Pitt Bulls Killed 82 Year Old Women

SPOTSYLVANIA, Virginia (AP) -- A woman whose three Pitt bulls fatally mauled an 82-year-old neighbor as she walked a small dog was sentenced Wednesday to three years in prison.

Deanna Large, 37, was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in December for the death of Dorothy Sullivan, who was attacked by the roaming dogs last March.

Sullivan had been walking her Shih Tzu, Buttons, in her front yard in Partlow when the dogs attacked and killed both.

Large was also found guilty of two misdemeanor charges of allowing her dogs to run loose and could have faced up to 10 years in prison.

Sullivan's death sparked outrage in her rural community, where residents said they had long been terrorized by aggressive, roaming dogs. Sullivan's family collected thousands of signatures on a petition urging stricter dog laws, and the General Assembly passed legislation imposing tough penalties on dog owners whose pets seriously injure others.

During the trial, witnesses testified that Large's Pitt bulls menaced the neighborhood. Animal control officers had taken two of the dogs away in 2004 after they were accused of killing a kitten. At one point, Large had 13 Pitt bulls in her trailer.

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