Panama City Dog Owner Found Guilty In Boy's Fatal Mauling

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According to WJHG

It took a local jury about two hours to return their verdicts Thursday evening in the trial of Edward Daniels, Jr.

Daniels was charged with manslaughter and tampering with evidence in an April dog attack that led to the death of 7-year old Tyler Jett.

Jurors came back with a split decision, guilty of one charge but not guilty of the other.

"We the jury find as follows as to the defendant, Edward Daniels, Jr., as to count one in this case. The defendant is guilty, guilty as charged, of manslaughter," said a Bay County Courthouse clerk.

It's a verdict family and friends of 7-year-old Tyler Jett say they've been waiting to hear.

"It won't bring Tyler back but Tyler gets justice and I feel bad for his mom and dad too," said Tyler's mother, Brandy Wilhite.

"I thought that Tyler got what he deserved. He got his justice. He got what we were hoping for," said a family friend, Kathryn Phillips.

Last April, Tyler Jett was attacked and killed by two dogs owned by Edward Daniels, Jr.

He died five days after the attack in Pensacola. That incident turned into a two day long trial with charges of manslaughter and tampering with evidence placed against Daniels.

Brandy Wilhite, Tyler's mother, says testifying during this week's trial brought her back to that fatal day.

"Scared, sad because i got to relive it all. Everybody has to relive it. Have to hear everything step by step," said Wilhite.

Attorneys from both sides and Daniels could not be reached for comment after a verdict was reached Thursday.

Those close to Tyler say the jury's decision wouldn't have a made difference to him.

"Tyler didn't hate nobody. He loved everybody. If he would have lived, it wouldn't have mattered to him," said Wilhite.

Instead they wish they could change the past.

"I would change him not getting attacked that day and him being here with us today," said Phillips.

Daniels could face a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. Circuit Judge James Fensom has set sentencing for October 14th.

Tyler Jett died in April, a week after he was attacked by two dogs while riding his bicycle.

Daniels, who has no previous criminal history, faces 15 years in prison when he's sentenced on Oct. 14.

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