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Update: Charges Filed in 3-State Dog Fighting Raid as Dogs Receive Much-Needed Care

Wednesday, April 3, 2013 - 4:15pm
Update: Charges Filed in 3-State Dog Fighting Raid as Dogs Receive Much-Needed Care

In late March, the ASPCA played a critical role in a three-state dog fighting raid that resulted in the rescue of nearly 100 animals. A few weeks after this intricately coordinated effort to rescue dogs in Texas, Missouri and Kansas went off without a hitch, we’re able to update you on the dogs and the dog fighters.

The Victims

When we found these dogs, many were doomed to live their whole lives tethered by heavy chains—and on the day of the raid, many were left outside to suffer through a blizzard. Now, says ASPCA Vice President of Field Investigations and Response Tim Rickey, they’re living in an entirely different world.

When the dogs arrived at our temporary shelter, our veterinary professionals, led by the ASPCA’s Dr. Sarah Kirk, examined them quickly and thoroughly. Some dogs needed immediate care, while others require ongoing treatment which they are now receiving from ASPCA and local veterinarians.

An ASPCA behaviorist will be on the ground at the shelter throughout this operation, and while the dogs stay in our clean and spacious shelter, they will benefit from behavioral enrichment programs that incorporate toys, games and lots of fun interactions with people. The dogs will have regular access to one of several large exercise playpens, where they’ll get to play with our responders and burn off excess doggy energy.

“Every day,” Rickey says, “we’re focusing on taking care of these animals and providing the best environment that we can for them.”

The Suspects

The ASPCA continues to work to collect evidence and provide other support to law enforcement, working to ensure dog fighters pay for harming these animal victims. The charges are just starting to roll in:

Last week Pete Davis Jr. and Melvin L. Robinson, both of Kansas City, Kansas, were each charged in federal court with one count of transporting animals for participation in an animal fighting venture in interstate commerce. If convicted, they face up to five years in federal prison and a possible fine of up to $250,000.

“The case is not over yet—there’s still a lot of work to be done on the investigation side,” says Rickey, adding that he hopes to see more arrests in relation to this raid.

The ASPCA had been assisting the FBI, U.S. Attorney’s Office, Missouri State Highway Patrol and other law enforcement agencies with the planning of this large-scale raid since November 2012. ASPCA Blood Sports Director Terry Mills provided his expertise to help these agencies maximize the operation’s impact. Our next steps: continuing to provide top-notch care for these animals and working with authorities to secure the right to place dogs in loving homes.

If you’ve given to the ASPCA recently, from the bottom of our hearts: thank you. This raid is an enormous undertaking and a huge commitment, but we are dedicated to being there for animal victims of cruelty whenever they need us. If you haven’t yet given lately, please consider doing so today. On behalf of animals across the country, thank you!

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Jo Wiest

Life in prison without parole!

Patrick Oliver

Go ASPCA!

Bonnie Welch

I am commenting on any Dog Fighting Ring convictions. The judges seem to never put these scum bags in prison or punish them harsher than a slap on the hand and a huge fine. Let face it, its the fine they care about. These scum bags need to go to prison and STAY there for 5 or 10 years if possible. Nothing will get the message out to these scum bags until; the judges put them away for max time...give max EVERYTHING!! We also need these so called "max sentences" changed and TRIPLED!! These scum bags dont get the point. They never will because they get off so easy. So the amount of people doing these crimes quadriple all the time because the punishment is sooooo easy for the crime. These dogs deserve to be protected. This crime MUST be punished harshley. Otherwise they will just keep doing it and the amount of people will quadriple....this MUST be STOPPED!! These poor dogs werent put on earth for this. Pitbulls got a bad wrap because of this and Pitbulls are NOT born like this and they are one of the most loving dog breeds out there. I dot know what it will take to get the Judges to put these scum bags away for a long long long time. Slapping their hands and ginving them fines just dont stop anything. Nor does it slow it down. FOLLOW through and throw away the key with these beings that are NOT humans!!! They ALL deserve the same sentence....they ALL need to go down!!!

Heidi

The people who do this to dogs should be tortured and killed, they are inhuman and do not deserve to live, such as Michael Vick who definetely should be dead. Instead he is allowed to own a dog there is no justice, the aspca does a great job but the liberal judges are so sickening.

Candi

Think about the dogs and how many more have to fight and DIE before the legel system starts giving harsher sentences. These people who train these dogs to kill deserves the same fate. put them through the training regemine these dogs are put through! Show them what the difference between in humane and humane treatment is.

Adele Fishman

Bravo to all those involved in rescuing these 100 poor, injured dogs. The dog fighting criminals should be given very tough jail sentences and fines!!!

debbie rounds

I think Humane Society should have to explain why they backed Vick's getting a dog. Of course it was money and being a spokesman for them.

Jennifer

Thank you ASPCA for the ability to humanely break up the cruelty. For myself, acting humanely and having mercy towards those who commit ALL FORMS of ANIMAL CRUETLY would be impossible. The offenders of ALL FORMS of ANIMAL CRUELTY ONLY deserve pain suffering and death, underserving would be any jail time. It is disgusting to know there are attorneys who defend those who are cruelty offenders! Only slightly under that disgusting thought is our taxes pay for public defenders; our taxes pay all court costs; our taxes pay the Judges who are absolute rejects with no morals in the first place; our taxes pay guards, etc. to babysit EVERY criminal our taxes pay to house, and our taxes pay to feed, and our taxes pay - to release oops, by "mistake" paperwork or release by "faulty monitoring devices" or to release early for "good behavior"....huh????? I refuse to contribute to giving the abusers such luxuries as well. So if we cannot give those deserving of pain suffering and death, what shall we do? Monetary fines until they die - our luck they would never have any of their own money until their death. I liked the idea they would have to register in every state, pet store. as an Animal Cruelty Offender. Put a sign on their lawn for all the world to see. Cut off their hands - our taxes would then pay their disability claims due to their inability to work or function in society (which they cannot do in the 1st place). Remember, they are sneaky incompetent moraly inhumane ridiculous by nature, an embarrasment to themselves with no self worth or self esteem. SO they most likely would find a way around any idea we come up with, I say when we find them, punishment is instint gratification - a line up for a firing squad; throw them into a deep pit to suffer from starvation; drop them onto a bed of nails; drown them; cut off their heads; set them on fire. Punishment fit the crimes?

Brenda Houston

I live in South Africa and we have the same cruelty on our doorstep. does the law do enough? NO, as our goverment is not animal lovers. Every year a bull are killed with bare hands as part of a cultural ritual!! Our local SPCA are figting to stop this insane abuse but they keep on running into the work "culture". We have dog fighting rings and I guess but I believe my guess might be true that some of our police are informants and share in the profit. so difficult to track these groups...does that tell you something. People like Vick should be castrated and then left as bait to those they abuse. then dump them on a dumping site when dead. Do I feel any remorse for people who kill animals for a sport....please I would not have any sleepless nights thats for sure.

Katherine Mayers

All these Idiots need be stopped and they should also be held responsible for any children they drag into an evil mess like this!They convince the kids it is ok to treat animals as a commodity and that they don't feel pain that they are so much garbage to be thrown out when they are done abusing them!Throw them away in a cell and forget them and lose the key! Making sure they are getting what they deserve!A fine is not going to stop the evil but maybe making them clean up after the animals will help.

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