The mom allegedly told police the dog had been aggressive with the baby before

By Greg Hanlon
July 03, 2020 12:54 PM
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Jennifer Nicole Connell
Tippecanoe County Jail

An Indiana mom is behind bars months after her dog mauled her 1-month-old son to death, police tell PEOPLE.

Lt. Matt Gard of the Lafayette Police Department tells PEOPLE Julian Connell was killed on Jan. 25 by a dog belonging to his mother, Jennifer Nicole Connell, 38, who was charged Tuesday with three counts of neglect of a dependent.

Gard says that on the day of the mauling, the baby was sleeping on a bed when the offending dog got into that room and attacked a smaller dog in the home.

Another minor separated the two dogs and took the injured dog out of the room. But when the minor returned, the offending dog was standing over Julian, who was bleeding, says Gard.

The responding officer had to fatally shoot the dog before tending to Julian, who was taken to the hospital and pronounced dead.

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According to Gard, Connell allegedly told police she was trying to find the offending dog a new home after a recent incident in which the dog had been aggressive with the baby.

In the home, police allegedly found dead mice and animal feces, Gard says.

Connell was booked into Tippecanoe County Jail on Tuesday. She is being held with no bond, jail records show.

It was not immediately clear if she has entered a plea to charges against her, and jail records do not list an attorney for her.

Gard says the responding officer was shaken up afterward.

"It took a pretty big toll on him; it was a pretty emotional scene to see," says Gard. "A lot of our officers are parents themselves. Seeing a young child attacked like that is tough."