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Tuesday, Nov 3, 2009County: Knox
Charges: Felony CTA
Case Images: 2 files available
Alleged: Jimmy Lovell
Case Updates: 5 update(s) available
A terrier mix that was badly wounded when she was dragged behind a pickup truck Tuesday afternoon is on the road to recovery, a veterinary surgeon who treated her said.
The 17-pound female, nicknamed "Little Brown Dog" by University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine's doctors and staff, has horrific thermal burns from the incident but "is a fighter," said Dr. Patti Sura, small animal surgeon. Still in the intensive care unit of the college's John and Ann Tickle Small Animal Hospital, the dog continues to get pain medication and has been under anesthesia as her wounds are cleaned and the dead tissue removed, Sura said. She's shown steady improvement and today ate food and stood up.
"She's a sweetheart," Sura said. "She's just the nicest dog. ... She's kind of captured everyone here."
Police charged Jimmy Lovell, 45, with one count of aggravated cruelty to animals. He was jailed in lieu of $2,500 bond.
The incident was reported about 4:15 p.m. Tuesday after several witnesses reported a man was driving along Liberty Street with the dog tied to the rear of the Chevrolet S-10 pickup truck.
As the truck moved toward Middlebrook Pike, several people tried to get the driver to stop, DeBusk said. The driver eventually stopped, cursed the witnesses, jerked the dog up from the asphalt, removed the rope from the truck and tossed the dog into the passenger side of the cab and drove away, DeBusk said.
Authorities found the dog abandoned alongside Sutherland Avenue near a business, DeBusk said.
The dog may leave the hospital next week if all goes well, Sura said. DeBusk said her future is undecided, but she won't be returned to Lovell.
The development office at the college, 2407 River Drive, Knoxville, 37920, has set up a "Small Brown Dog Fund" to cover some of the cost of her care.
|Knoxville police say the man tried for dragging a dog behind his truck has been charged with dealing drugs in a school zone.|
After neighbors complained they suspected drug dealing at a residence on the 3400 block of Pilkay Rd., KPD began an investigation. Police say there were many deals involving Oxycodone at the residence. Officers executed a search warrant at the home Wednesday evening.
Police say the primary resident, 47-year-old Jimmy Lovell, was charged with possession of Oxycodone for resale in a drug free school zone and possession of Xanax for resale in a drug free school zone.
A KPD spokesman confirms Lovell is the same man who was tried in an animal cruelty case involving his girlfriend's dog dubbed "The Little Brown Dog." A judge declared a mistrial when the jury could not reach a verdict in February.
|Source: wbir.com - Apr 19, 2012|
Update posted on Apr 19, 2012 - 12:40PM
|A Knox County jury today deadlocked and could not reach a verdict in the trial of a Knoxville man accused of dragging his then-girlfriend's dog behind his truck.|
The jury forewoman told Criminal Court Judge Bob McGee it was "hopelessly deadlocked" after deliberating just under three hours.
He declared a mistrial and set a new trial for Aug. 7.
Jurors were deciding whether Jimmy Lovell, 47, was guilty of aggravated animal cruelty in the November 2009 dragging of a 17-pound terrier mix later dubbed "Little Brown Dog." The case captured the attention of animal lovers throughout the region who coughed up $13,000 for the female dog's care and even created a Facebook page in honor of the pooch.
But the case turned, not on whether it was Lovell behind the wheel, but whether Lovell intended to drag the dog, which was owned by Lovell's then-girlfriend, Tonya Eubanks
Jurors today got a closer look at the man cast as the villain in the saga of the Little Brown Dog via testimony from a businessman in his neighborhood and Lovell himself.
Lovell told jurors he dropped out of school in the ninth grade and has suffered a series of head traumas that impacted his mental capacity. Despite that, Lovell has always managed to earn a living, businessman Asa Hobbs said.
"He did whatever he could to make a living," Hobbs said. "He did a good job of it. He's a good member of the community."
Hobbs was with Lovell on the day of the dragging when Lovell returned to his Pilkay Road home to gather tools to fix a friend's vehicle in hopes of earning money to repair his own truck. Eubanks had left the dog, which she had brought to Lovell's home a few days before, inside the house while she went with a friend to the hospital, according to testimony.
"I brung (sic) him outside," Lovell testified. "I had him on a leash. It's about six feet (long). I was letting (the dog) use the restroom."
Hobbs said Lovell turned the pooch over to him so Lovell could finish rounding up tools.
"He asked me to walk the dog so he could get his stuff," Hobbs testified. "He was running in and out of the house."
When Lovell asked Hobbs to take a look at his truck's engine, Hobbs said he tried to secure the leash to a fence pole, but it wouldn't stay attached.
"We just laid (the leash handle) on the (ball hitch) of the truck," Hobbs said. "The dog just laid down and we went up (to the) front (of the truck)."
Lovell later received a phone inside his house from his friend, who urged Lovell to hurry to the garage where Lovell would repair his friend's vehicle, both men said. Lovell said his friend assured him he would have enough money to pay Lovell, who had been set to borrow cash for his own truck repairs from Hobbs.
"(Lovell) said, 'I've got it all worked out,' " Hobbs said.
By then, both men had forgotten the dog, each testified. Defense attorney Mike Whalen showed photographs of Lovell's house and the position of Lovell's truck to argue Lovell could not have seen the rear of the truck as he exited his house and got into the cab.
Lovell said he was stopped at a stop sign at the intersection of Knott Road and Liberty Street when he first heard people yelling. He said he wasn't sure at whom they were yelling. He turned onto Liberty Street and began to realize the bystanders were "hollering at me," Lovell testified.
"They was hollering at me to stop, and I said, 'Oh, God! I forgot the dog,' " Lovell testified.
It was what he did - or didn't do - next that Assistant District Attorney General Debbie Malone argues shows his intent to harm the animal. Her witnesses - the angry bystanders - testified Lovell stopped the truck, walked to the rear bumper, "jerked the dog up by the leash" and tossed it into the passenger side of the truck before driving away.
Lovell denied casually tossing the dog into his truck, and Whalen argued that if Lovell had no regard for the animal, he would have pitched it into the truck bed.
Lovell concedes he did not seek medical attention for the dog. He said he had no money to do so. Instead, he took it home, he said, wrapped it in a towel, called Hobbs for advice and left the dog behind as he spent the next 20 minutes at his friend's house. He said he did not realize the extent of the dog's injuries. When he returned home, Eubanks arrived a short time later.
"She left with the dog and said she'd take care of it," he said.
Testimony on Tuesday showed Eubanks took the dog to an animal shelter, lied about finding the dog abandoned on the side of the road and gave a fake name.
|Source: knoxnews.com - Feb 22, 2012|
Update posted on Feb 23, 2012 - 10:55AM
|A year ago she was Little Brown Dog, a 17-pound mixed breed hurt so badly from being dragged behind a truck that her skin was gone and her bones ground down. Now the canine whose expressive brown eyes and fighting spirit touched people worldwide has a new name, a new life and a saucy wag to her step.|
She still answers to "Brown," the nickname she got after being brought bleeding, bruised and burned last November to the University of Tennessee Veterinary Medical Center. But the lean-bodied, short-legged pup is now officially Sasha Brown. She's the much-loved companion of Dr. Patti Sura, the veterinarian and surgeon who treated the dog for weeks but resisted bringing her home.
Brown's long caramel-hued fur hides some scars left from Nov. 3, 2009. Tied by a rope to the rear of a Chevrolet S-10 truck, the dog was dragged down Liberty Street. Knoxville Police Department charged Jimmy Lovell, 45, of Pilkay Road, with aggravated animal cruelty. Lovell has said the incident was an accident. His trial is set for July 18, 2011.
Marks on Brown's narrow chest and her right front paw are easy to spot. Hair follicles were burned away; hair won't grow back. Her back feet needed skin grafts. X-rays would show that part of Brown's pectoral muscles are gone and that her breastbone and some bones in her feet are thinner than they should be.
But this young dog, once so injured that bits of her paw pads are missing, hikes the Smokies, takes three-mile runs and chases squirrels and rabbits. She no longer fears moving cars and occasionally shows a stubborn streak. And her favorite place is curled in Sura's lap.
Called a terrier mix when she got to the hospital, Sasha Brown is certainly a canine collaboration. Likely 3 or 4 years old, she's got an overall Sheltie look. Her coloration and curly tail suggest a bit of Pomeranian; those short legs and long body imply a dash of dachshund or Corgi.
"She's just a little brown dog," says Sura. "She's just perfect."
Things were much different when doctor met dog. On the evening of Nov. 3, 2009, Sura dropped by the vet hospital's intensive care unit. The attending intern asked if she'd look at a critically injured dog brought in by Knoxville Police Department's Animal Control Unit. The animal had multiple burns and wounds on her belly and legs, but Sura found no underlying damage. With treatment, time and luck, the dog could recover.
The intern was so delighted at Sura's assessment she wanted to name the pup in her honor. "She said, 'We'll call her 'Little Patti,' " recalls Sura. "I said, 'Don't be ridiculous.' She's little and she's brown. We'll call her 'Little Brown Dog.' "
Little Brown Dog needed weeks of extensive medical care and pain medicine. First her head peeked from a cocoon of bandages around her torso, paws and legs. For several days she underwent daily general anesthesia so doctors could clean her wounds and dig out embedded rocks. It would take Sura and veterinary students up to 2<0x0192> hours to tend the dog's wounds and reapply the bandages.
Gradually Little Brown Dog - often shortened to "Brown" or "LBD" - recovered. Nine days after she got to the hospital, she stood up and wagged her tail.
"Her personality, her trust helped us to know we were doing the right thing for her," says Sura, a UT College of Veterinary Medicine assistant professor of surgery.. "She never offered to bite anybody, and certainly she was in enough pain that I would be biting people."
Brown quickly became a canine sweetheart from Tennessee to Europe.
Veterinary students began to give the dog's bandages fashion flair. They cut designs from colored bandages to make doggy outfits. At times Brown's stomach and leg bandages gave her the look of a slice of watermelon, a Lady Vol basketball player, Wonder Woman and a Thanksgiving turkey.
UT College of Veterinary Medicine Media Relations spokesperson Sandra Harbison filled pages of a legal-sized note pad with names of people offering to adopt the dog. Wellwishers delivered toys, blankets and a therapeutic bed.
Then money, from $2 to $300, began to arrive. The college development office set up a fund. Some people enclosed poignant notes about their pets; others signed their animals' names on cards.
About $14,000 from 253 donors from Alabama to New Jersey, Canada and Europe came in. It paid Brown's $8,230 medical bill. The remaining money treated other abused, needy animals where no other financial support existed for their care.
By late November, Brown was ready for a new home. Lovell had surrendered ownership of the animal. Uncertain if the dog might develop future medical problems, her caregivers thought it best if she found a forever home with a vet hospital employee.
Brown visited three families but none could take her permanently. But the dog was pretty clear who she loved. She'd adopted Sura, the person she'd seen daily for weeks. When the doctor left the ICU, Brown whimpered after her. If someone else took Brown for a walk, she looked for Sura.
But the doctor swore the time wasn't right for another pet. She already had a calico cat named Spoke. Her three-legged dog Mac didn't like other dogs.
"I told myself, 'I can't fall in love with her. She's just a patient.' But watching her behavior endeared her to me," Sura says.
Then two nurses removed their names from list of potential adopters. They told Sura, "We want you to have her.'"
And Sura admitted to herself what the nurses knew - Brown wasn't only a patient. "It was, like, 'I really do love this dog.' " She brought the animal home for a day. Cautious at how Spoke and especially Mac might react, she left Brown's cage set up at UT.
"I called the next day and said, 'You can clean that cage out now.' And everyone was 'Yeah!' "
With a new home, Brown needed a permanent name. Sasha sounded pretty, went well with Brown and honored a good dog from Sura's childhood, a neighbor's Sheltie that once raised a litter of homeless kittens. Sasha Brown "reminds me so much of that dog because she is so sweet and good natured."
This Sasha likes to chase and be chased by the cat around the house. She enjoys playing with other dogs of any and all sizes.
"She's a little ankle biter. So while the big dogs are jumping and knocking each other down she's right there, biting at their ankles," says Sura.
As Brown ages, her back legs could develop arthritis. That's uncertain; she's already exceeded expectations.
"I never thought she would run," says Sura. "I never thought she would be an athlete. If I let her, she would be a hunter of small rodenty things. I haven't found anything at all that she not only can't do but doesn't want to do."
This is a fearless dog. Anything that startles her must quickly be inspected. She's doggone stubborn at times. Sura's taught Sasha obedience commands, but if the dog doesn't wish to perform she presents only a blank look.
"There is a little diva in this dog. But that's OK," says Sura.
Recently Brown passed the tests to be a dog in the Human-Animal Bond in Tennessee program. Soon she will visit a school to listen to children read.
"She's a charmer. Wherever she is, she wants to be there," says Sura. "I think people are drawn to that. She's a dog that can block everything else out for the moment she is with you and make you feel important.
"She's just really neat. She's really sweet. She's just a perfect dog."
|Source: knoxnews.com - Dec 19, 2010|
Update posted on Dec 19, 2010 - 9:58AM
|The case of a Knoxville man accused of dragging a dog behind a pickup truck in November has been sent to a grand jury.|
This means a grand jury of Knox County residents will decide if there's enough evidence for Jimmy Lovell to stand trial. The judge made the ruling after testimony from five eyewitnesses.
Lovell was arrested and charged November 3 with one count of aggravated cruelty to animals, which is a felony.
Witnesses called police to report seeing Lovell driving in the area around Liberty Street with a little brown dog being dragged behind his truck. The dog was tied with a rope.
The dog was eventually found abandoned along Sutherland Avenue.
Lovell later told 6 News that he forgot the dog was tied behind his truck, didn't abandon it and drove it back to his home.
Doctors at the UT Veterinary School say "Little Brown Dog" (LBD) has made remarkable progress healing from severe wounds on all four legs, over her breast bone and on her knees.
The vet school says LBD only has one bandage left. She had two skin grafts. One took completely and the other mostly took.
The vets describe LBD as a "diva" who loves to be petted. She will roll over and let people rub her belly.
To see previous pictures of LBD during her treatment process, click here.
The original caretaker of LBD, Ingebord Williams, spoke to the media at court Friday.
Williams said her son-in-law found LBD as a pup at his house. She and her husband decided to foster LBD until they were able to place her with what they thought would be a permanent home.
"They ended up giving the dog to somebody else or to this so called human being who hurt the dog and it has upset us very badly. My husband wound up in the hospital with his heart by being upset about it," Williams said.
Organizers presented a petition signed by more than 5,000 Facebook fans of Little Brown Dog to the Knox County District Attorney General's Office Thursday afternoon. It asks for Lovell to get the maximum sentence.
"I hope that the truth comes out. I hope that the DA is able to provide proof that he intentionally abused the little dog and left the dog for dead," said Angela Jordan, with the Facebook group.
The Facebook community, along with other animal lovers, has raised more than $15,000 to pay the UT Vet School for the care of LBD and others like her.
Among LBD's supporters were two animal activists, so touched by the story, they made the trip from Chattanooga.
|Source: wate.com - Jan 10, 2010|
Update posted on Dec 19, 2010 - 9:45AM
|A Knoxville man faces a Dec. 11 preliminary hearing in Knox County General Sessions Court on a charge he dragged his dog for several miles behind a pickup truck earlier this month.|
Jimmy Lovell, 45, appeared in court today on the charge of aggravated cruelty to an animal. A Knox County public defender was appointed to represent him after he said he lacked the money to pay for his own lawyer. He is free on a $2,500 bond.
According to police, after witnesses saw the 17-pound dog Nov. 3 being dragged behind a Chevrolet S-10, several people tried to stop Lovell. He got out at Middlebrook Pike and walked toward the back of the vehicle while cursing at the witnesses, jerked the dog off the ground, removed the rope from the truck, threw the dog into the passenger side of the vehicle and drove away, according to Knoxville Police Department spokesman Darrell DeBusk.
Lovell was arrested later at his Pilkay Road home.
He has said the incident was an accident that he regrets.
The dog suffered numerous abrasions from being dragged on the asphalt. She is being treated at the University of Tennessee's College of Veterinary Medicine.
|Source: knoxnews.com - Nov 13, 2009|
Update posted on Nov 13, 2009 - 4:41PM
- Knoxville News Sentinel - Nov 5, 2009
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