Dog that mauled 4-year-old boy moved to medical facility

A pit bull that was ordered confined for the rest of his life after he mauled a 4-year-old boy was moved from Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio's animal shelter to a medical facility where veterinarians can more easily treat the dog's skin cancer.

"No probation, no parole, no execution.. a life sentence."

That was Sheriff Arpaio the day Mickey the Pit Bull was sentenced to spend the rest of his life at the MCSO MASH unit.

But as it turns out, Mickey won't spend the rest of his life behind bars.  On Wednesday, he left the jail and headed to an animal care center.

The Sheriff has taken quite a bit of interest in this case: going to court for the dog, housing the dog and calling the dog a victim as Mickey was moved from the jail to a secret medical facility.

Mickey, now free from jail, was wagging his tail as he walked out of Arpaio's no kill shelter.

"We consider Mickey a victim. I'm glad that he's doing okay and it was good to have him in our jail," said Arpaio.

But this is the same dog behind the attack that left 4-year-old Kevin Vicente's face severely injured.

The Sheriff advocated in court to save the dog from euthanization, offering his jail for Mickey to serve a life sentence.  

The dog's cell was equipped with a 24/7 web camera and the sheriff frequently spoke publicly about the case.

On Wednesday, he called a news conference after a judge signed off on moving the dog to an undisclosed medical facility to undergo cancer treatment.

Why focus on having so much media attention on a situation like this dog when there are bigger issues out there?

"First of all, you didn't have to come here to begin with. I'm not trying to get nasty. A lot of people are concerned with this," replied Arpaio.

But one concerned citizen, Kevin Vicente and his family, weren't even notified of the dog's release.  Under Arizona law, victims must be notified of their perpetrator's release.

"There is not a legal case where he is a legal victim, therefore he's not entitled to victim's rights," said Mickey's attorney, John Schill.

Vicente still faces additional surgeries and may never see again out of one eye.  The Maricopa Health Foundation is accepting donations for his treatment.

As for the dog, Mickey still won't be able to be adopted or fostered out.
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