Police: Owners not cooperating in Houma dog attack

Print
Email
|

wwltv.com

Posted on April 3, 2014 at 5:44 PM

Updated Thursday, Apr 3 at 6:01 PM

Paul Murphy / Eyewitness News
Email: pmurphy@wwltv.com | Twitter: @pmurphywwl

HOUMA, La. -- Police still have more questions than answers in last week's pit bull attack and death of a little girl in Houma.

They say the dog's owners are not cooperating with the investigation.

"What we have is a dog attack," said Houma Police Chief Todd Duplantis. "We have a dead 4-year-old child. We have a parent that was in the house. That's what we have here and we're trying to get to the bottom of it."

Detectives are trying to piece together the final moments before a 130-pound pit bull named Niko mauled 4-year-old Mia Derouen. The attack happened at a Houma apartment complex on S. Hollywood Drive.

Duplantis said Mia's mother Megan Touchet and her boyfriend Kerry Dominique, who owned the dog, now have lawyers and are not answering any questions.

"We just want to know what happened that day and why it happened. What caused that dog to do what it did. The only way to find that out, the ones with the answers, are the owners."

The chief said investigators also want to know if the dog was abused or if it was injected with steroids to increase its size and strength.

"Animal control experts, people who first arrived on the scene, they described this dog as being a very huge, massive dog. The officers described the dog as being a monster."

Barry Trahan owns pit bulls. He said 130 pounds is unusually large for a pit bull, which normally weigh in at about 80 pounds.

"You got to be giving the dog something to attack a woman and a kid like that," said Trahan.

As Houma residents mourn the loss of little Mia, they would also like to know exactly what happened.

"You never want to see something like this happen," said AJ Trahan, who works not far from where the attack happened. "Especially to a little girl. She had her whole life ahead of her."

Officers responding to the attack shot and killed the dog. The chief said it couldn't be tested for steroids post-mortem. But, he said a second smaller dog also living in the apartment is now under observation at a local animal shelter and being tested for performance enhancers and rabies.

"We are testing the other dog. That is still part of the investigation," said Duplantis.

Duplantis said his investigators are communicating almost on a daily basis with the Terrebonne District Attorney's Office. He said the dog owners could face child neglect or child endangerment charges.

Print
Email
|