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Officer says chained pit bull is on road to recovery

November 25, 2008|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. -- A pit bull found chained in the attic of a Martinsburg home Nov. 12 with open wounds and ribs showing had gained 10 pounds by Tuesday -- when two residents charged with abusing the animal were scheduled to make their first court appearance on felony counts of animal cruelty.

Since being rescued from 252 E. Burke St., the dog has received medical care from Martinsburg Animal Hospital and is recovering, but it remains in the custody of Berkeley County Animal Control, supervising officer Donna McMahan said Tuesday.

McMahan joined Animal Control officers in Berkeley County Magistrate Court on Tuesday afternoon for preliminary hearings scheduled for Breshannon Leslie Deveraux, 33, of 252 E. Burke St., Martinsburg, and Randall Craig Siford Jr., 34.

Deveraux has been in Eastern Regional Jail since Nov. 18, when she was arrested on a misdemeanor count of solicitation of prostitution. She waived her right to have a preliminary hearing within 20 days of her arrest on the animal cruelty charge. The hearing will be rescheduled.

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Siford failed to appear for his hearing and was put in jail Tuesday evening, less than five hours after Magistrate Jim Humphrey issued a warrant for his arrest, according to jail records. Siford listed the same address as Deveraux when he was arraigned, court officials said.

Deveraux's $10,000 bond for the animal cruelty case was revoked last week when police allege she solicited sexual favors in exchange for money from a confidential informant in the 300 block of South Rosemont Avenue, according to court records.

She had $60 of "recorded currency" used by the informant in her purse, police have said.

In court Tuesday, Thomas Stanley, Deveraux's court-appointed attorney for the animal cruelty charge, told Humphrey he was unable to represent the woman in the prostitution case because of a conflict.

Stanley did not say why he advised his client to reschedule the hearing, and Berkeley County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Stephanie Saunders confirmed he was not obligated to provide a reason. Stanley used the magistrate's telephone at the bench after he arrived to confirm he was actually appointed to represent Deveraux.

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