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Charlotte, North Carolina drunk driver Stephen Lance Helms has been charged with Driving While Impaired, Assault with a Deadly Weapon, and Second Degree Murder in the hit-and-run death of cyclist Roy Dean Mittelsteadt.

Mittelsteadt was riding his bike on Rocky River Road on his way home from work Thursday night when he was struck by Helms, who fled the scene. A passing motorist discovered Mittelsteadt on the side of the road and called police. Investigators then alerted area police departments to be on the lookout for a vehicle with damage to the front end. A short while later, Helms was stopped while driving a vehicle with massive front end damage, and he was arrested for Driving While Impaired. Charges of Assault with a Deadly Weapon and Second Degree Murder were later added and he was released on $105,000 bond.

Middelsteadt, a veteran of Operation Desert Storm, is survived by his wife and four children.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a bicycle accident, or any accident with a drunk driver, the experienced attorneys at Auger & Auger can help. Call now for your free consultation.

Attacks by pit bulls increased by 20% in Mecklenburg County in 2009. Charlotte Mecklenburg Animal Care and Control reported 208 pit bull bites in 2009. The next closest breed was the Labrador Retriever with 152 bites, followed by German Sheperds and Chows.

Another child was recently the victim of a dog bite, this time a pit bull mix. The child is recovering from his dog bite in Charlotte, North Carolina at Carolinas Medical Center. Seven year old John Ellis Nixon was outside the door of his neighbors house when he was attacked. Sources report that doctors were successful in saving the child’s eye, and that one of his ears had almost been torn off.

If Lincoln County Animal Control defines the dog as “dangerous”, the dog will have to be moved outside the county. Last September, this same dog bit another victim at the owner’s house. Evidence of this dogs prior bite will help if the parents of John Nixon pursue a claim against the dogs owner, as it shows the owners had knowledge of the dogs prior behavior. Courts in North Carolina will also hold a dog owner liable for injuries if they knew or should have known of the propensities of a particular breed.

If you have questions about a dog bite suffered by you or a family member, call one of our dog bite attorneys for a free consultation.

The mother of a 2 year old girl shot a pit bull after it bit the child in the face, and then turned on the girl’s father.

The little girl is now extensively scarred on the left side of her face, and might need to undergo facial reconstructive surgery.

The mother, Tasheka Beatty, who had been minding the dog for a friend, was charged with animal cruelty. Ms. Beatty took full responsibility for her actions and stated, “I just think that’s what any other parent would do if they saw what I saw.” As a parent, I am inclined to agree with Ms. Beatty’s feelings.

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AMVA) offers the following advice to avoid a dog bite:
-Never disturb a dog that is with puppies, sleeping, or eating
-Do not leave dog alone with small child or baby
-Be aware of potentially threatening situations
-Teach children not to approach strange dogs, and ask the owner for permission before approaching dog to pet it
-Stand still if approached by dog wanting to sniff you
-If approached by frightening dog, speak calmly without looking dog in the eye; stand still or back up slowly until the dog leaves; do not turn your back or run away
-If attacked, curl into a ball, protecting you head, neck and face with your hands

For more information, call one our dog bite attorneys for a free consultation.

One day after the tragic death of 5 year old Makayla Woodard, a 10 year old South Carolina girl was viciously attacked by a pit bull while walking home from neighbor Jennifer Barnes’ house.

When the victim’s uncle arrived at the scene of the attack, he found the dogs ripping the girl’s arms apart. Investigators discovered that the neighbor, Barnes, was not at home at the time of the attack, but that her 3 pit bulls were loose in her yard. One of the dogs was shot and killed when it would not release the girl.

According to Charlotte Mecklenburg Animal Care and Control, there were 208 pit bull bites in 2009, and that in the fiscal year ending June 30, 2009, pit bull bites had increased by 20%.

If you have any questions regarding a dog bite, call a dog bite attorney today for your free consultation.

A 5 year old Union County girl was viciously attacked and killed, and her grandmother seriously injured, in a dog attack involving 2 pit bulls owned by her neighbors

Makayla Woodard was walking through her neighbors yard on her way to her own backyard, when she was savagely attacked by two pit bulls, who neighbors say have gotten loose at least once before. Police confirm that the owners had just recently been warned to keep the dogs locked up. Her grandmother suffered serious injuries when she tried to save her.

Police arrived on the scene while the girl was still being attacked. They were able to pull the dogs off the girl but had to shoot one of the dogs when it charged toward the girl again. The second dog was later shot after running loose for 2 hours.

According to the leash law in Waxhaw, a dog may be free on the owner’s property provided an adult is outside with the dog, and the adult is in control of the dog. Police are expected to bring charges against the dog’s owner, who police say were not home at the time of the attack.

Police are expected to bring charges against the dog’s owner.

According to Dogsbite.org, the State of North Carolina has reported that pit bulls are, in fact, biting more frequently than any other breed.

If you or a family member has been injured due to a dog bite, or if you just have questions about a dog bite, call one of our dog bite attorneys for a free consultation.

In a vicious attack, a 6 year old boy from Mint Hill, North Carolina was bitten by a family member’s pit bull.

The child was visiting at his grandmother’s house when he was attacked while walking from his grandmother’s house to his aunt’s house, right next door. Upon hearing the screaming child, the boy’s mother and aunt emerged from the house and found the dog on top of the child. After his mother pulled the dog off of him, the dog ran away. Shortly thereafter, the boys grandmother also went next door to her daughters house and was attacked by the same dog.

Both the grandmother and the child underwent surgery at a local hospital, where the boy was listed in critical condition, and the grandmother was in stable condition.

If you or a loved one is attacked by a dog, call a dog bite attorney for a free consultation.

Update
The father of the boy injured in this attack, Thomas Clark, has spoken out about his son and the injuries he sustained when attacked by his cousin’s pit bill. The child has undergone 8 surgeries; one of his eyes is not doing well, he has facial scarring, and may have permanent loss of use of his right arm. Mr. Clark spoke for the purpose of educating people of the dangers of being attacked by this particular breed, a pit bull.

A North Carolina woman was found to have a blood alcohol content of .22%, almost 3 times the legal limit. Kimberly Ricks of Greensboro was involved in a minor traffic accident in West Seneca, New York, and fled the scene. Police caught up with Ricks who was driving with her 11 year old son in the car.

Our Charlotte, North Carolina car accident attorneys have discussed on several occasions (It’s Time North Carolina Adopts New Yorks Child Passenger Protection Act and Would Leandra’s Law Have Prevented Death Of Charlotte Area Teen, the New York law that makes all DWI offenses a felony. We fully support this law and hope that North Carolina will soon adopt a similar law.

Under New York’s Child Passenger Protection Act, also known as Leandra’s Law, Ricks has been charged with Aggravated DWI, misdemeanor DWI, and other traffic violations. She faces up to 4 years in prison since she had a child under 16 in the car. She will also be reported to the Statewide Central Register of Child Abuse and Maltreatment.

A woman from Charlotte, North Carolina was seriously injured when she was t-boned by a speeding police car that was not operating its siren or blue lights.

If an officer is going to exceed the speed limit during a pursuit, State Law requires the officer to activate their sirens and lights. In this Charlotte, North Carolina car wreck, the innocent victim had the right-of-way when she was struck by the CMPD officer, who was traveling 45mph in a 35mph zone.

This is not the first time an innocent victim has been injured due to a speeding officer. In March, 2009, a Charlotte man was killed when a police car going more than 90mph without its sirens or lights activated, hit him. That officer later pled guilty to involuntary manslaughter.

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