'I have to follow the law': Judge lowers bond of owner of dogs that mauled 9 year old Detroit girl

A judge lowered the bond of the man who owned the dogs that mauled a 9-year-old girl in Detroit to death Friday.

Facing up to life in prison for the horrific mauling death of Emma Hernandez, 33-year-old Pierre Cleveland was back in court for a preliminary hearing. He's charged with second-degree murder, manslaughter and owning a dangerous animal causing death. 

The little girl was riding her bike on Central Avenue in southwest Detroit last week when Cleveland's three dogs viciously attacked and killed her. Cleveland has been behind bars ever since. He was given a $2 million cash bond, but his attorney tried to lower it Friday.

"My client for one has no previous criminal contact whatsoever, your Honor. He has relinquished those animals. As a matter of fact, we have signed a consent for those animals to be euthanized," said Emmett Greenwood.

But prosecutors are asking for at least a $100,000 cash bond, calling Cleveland dangerous and a flight risk.

"The day that the defendant was arrested before he was actually put in a squad car, his cell was taken away from him. He texted his friend to go and hide all of the marijuana plants for his grow operation," said assistant prosecutor Christine Hines.

Prosecutors say over the past year, Cleveland's dogs also attacked a neighbor, chased two teens in an alley and even killed puppies in his basement.

"If he no longer has the dogs, how does he present a danger to the community?" said 36th District Court Judge Michael E. Wagner.

This judge lowered Cleveland's bond to 10 percent of $20,000 to $2,000.

"I'll admit this is probably one of the hardest things for anyone. No one should ever lose a child. No one should ever lose a child, but I have to follow the law. There's a presumption of innocence," Judge Wagner.

This judge also ordered Cleveland to wear a GPS tether  and not to return to that neighborhood. And of course, no posession of animals.

Cleveland is due back in court Sept. 9.