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Pit bulls' owners plead guilty in fatal mauling, get jail term

The owners of three dogs that fatally mauled a 73-year-old woman have pleaded guilty to manslaughter and been sentenced to one year in jail. Sidney L. Bodie, 36, and Sheri Laramore, 28, were sentenced Wednesday to an additional year under house arrest and three years' probation. Prosecutors recommended that Ms. Laramore serve her jail sentence under house arrest.

They are forbidden to own another dog for five years, and Circuit Judge D. Southwood ordered each to pay the estate of Frances L. Fletcher $4,431 to cover medical and funeral expenses.

They also must perform 100 hours of community service at either an animal shelter or hospital emergency room.

Bodie owned two of the mixed-breed pit bull terriers and Ms. Laramore owned the other that attacked and killed Mrs. Fletcher on Oct. 8. The couple was asleep when the early-morning attack occurred.

Mrs. Fletcher was dragged about 20 feet by the dogs and was bitten and scratched more than 300 times in the 15-minute attack. It ended when a passer-by fought the dogs away with a baseball bat.

Prosecutors contended that the couple, who are to report to jail March 5, had a responsibility to control the animals.

Mrs. Fletcher's sisters, Annie Tubb and Alice Kaige, did not attend the sentencing, but they wrote a letter to Chief Assistant State Attorney John Delaney, who prosecuted the case.

In the letter, which Delaney read in court, the sisters said they thought the sentence was just. They did not attend the sentencing, according to the letter, because they did not want to appear vindictive.

"We have no joy over this matter, as no punishment will bring our sister back," the sisters wrote. "We also do not wish to ruin two more lives any more than this punishment will provide."

Craig Williams, an attorney for Bodie and Ms. Laramore, said his clients are "deeply saddened and sorrowed" by the death.