I-Team: Smell believed to be deceased person led security guard to apartment with 2 emaciated dogs, documents say

I-Team Special Reports

Las Vegas man charged in animal abuse case

Eric Paterson “Peterson” (KLAS)

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A security guard who conducted a welfare check after smelling an odor he believed to be a deceased person or someone in distress led to the discovery of two dogs living in filth, court documents obtained by the I-Team said.

Metro police arrested Eric Paterson, of Las Vegas, on Jan. 25 on the 2000 block of East Charleston Boulevard after he crossed the street in an area other than a crosswalk. The event for which Paterson is charged with, two counts of willful or malicious torture and maiming or killing of a dog or cat, reportedly occurred in June, court documents show.

In June, a security guard “smelled a foul rotting odor” coming from Paterson’s unit and “was concerned that someone had died or needed medical attention,” court documents said.

Once inside, the guard said he saw feces and urine covering the entire floor of the apartment. Two pit bulls, named Brisco and Bailey were also inside the unit, court documents said. There was no food or water in the unit for the animals, the report said.

“The residence was cluttered to the point where the floor was hardly visible,” court documents state. “The floor was covered in feces, urine, stains and trash.”

According to court documents, one of the dogs had weighed 60 pounds during a check-up four months prior, but weighed almost half her weight during Paterson’s arrest. Both dogs were described as being underweight and extremely thin.

According to court records, a criminal complaint in the case was not filed until December.

A hearing in the case is scheduled for Feb. 16. According to court documents, Paterson also has gone by the names of Eric Petersen, Eric Peterson and several other similar names.

The dogs were recovering well in the weeks after being removed from the apartment, court documents said. Their location was unknown Friday.

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