Arrest Made in Case of Owens Cross Roads Child Killed by Dog

by Staff
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MADISON COUNTY-On March 1, 2024, Madison County Sheriff’s deputies, along with the New Hope Police Department and Owens Cross Roads Police Department, responded to the 200 block of T. R. Christian Road for a report of a two-year-old child who was attacked by dogs. Upon arrival, law enforcement officers began administering life-saving measures to the child, who was later pronounced dead at the scene. The Sheriff’s Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) team and Major Crime detectives arrived to start a thorough investigation into the dog attack. During the investigation, two dogs were found at a neighbor’s residence and were seized due to their potential involvement in the attack. Detectives also discovered that a third dog, located down the road, might have been involved in the attack. The owner of the third dog surrendered their pet to law enforcement while the investigation continued. All three dogs suspected of being in the attack were surrendered by the owners and picked up by Madison County Animal Control.

Melissa Phillips

During the investigation, it was discovered that one of the three dogs had recently been involved in another dog attack in the area. The New Hope Police Department reported that incident in January of this year. With the help of a forensic odontologist, they were able to collect bite impressions and rule out the involvement of two of the initial dogs in the child’s death. The dogs involved in this incident have all been euthanized.
Last week, a death investigation was brought before a Madison County Grand Jury, resulting in the indictment of 55-year-old Melissa Phillips for a violation of “Emily’s Law” Dangerous Dog AL3-6a-5(b). Today, Melissa Phillips voluntarily surrendered to Sheriff’s detectives and was subsequently taken to the Madison County Jail Facility. Her bond was set at $15,000. The investigation is ongoing and could result in additional charges.
Sheriff Kevin Turner said, “Nothing can make up for the loss of a child, but we hope this arrest helps bring the family one step closer to some form of closure. I want to thank all the law enforcement officers who took part in this investigation, as well as Madison County Animal Control”.
Media Release-Madison County Sheriff’s Office
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