No justice for Phoenix? A mistrial was declared tonight in the case of the fatal burning of a young dog in Baltimore in 2009 who became the face of animal cruelty across the nation.
The jury had deliberated two and a half days and was unable to reach a verdict. Tremayne and Travers Johnson, who were 17 at the time of the incident, had been indicted on charges of animal cruelty. The Baltimore Sun reports that jurors were unable to convince one holdout. A decision to retry the case is up to the Baltimore state's attorney who because of a gag order could not comment.
The horrific case of the young pit bull doused with accelerant and set ablaze in front of a group of people on an inner city street sparked national outcry and the led to the creation of an anti-animal abuse task force. Ohmidog blog reports the commission's report found the city's response to animal abuse to be inadequate - a finding, ohmidog points out, that the trial of the Johnsons seemed to reinforce. Defense attorneys repeatedly pointed out flaws in the investigation and crime scene was not secured or documented properly.