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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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Jeff Gustafson

There should be tougher laws for this. Let the punishment fit the crime. No animal deserves to be treated like this. My heart goes out to these animals. Thank you for doing your part to help the helpless.

Susan Stibitz

The law enforcement, medical and rehab workers who rescue, treat, care for and rehabilitate These dogs are the true heros in my world. I only wish I had their kind of courage. Never think your work is unappreciatd.

Jim Kilpatrick

I hope that the people arrested get the maximum fines and jail time.

Nanette Sanchez-Cook

DOG FIGHTING IS ABSOLUTELY HORRIFIC!! ANYONE INVOLVED (INCLUDING ALL SPECTATORS)NEEDS TO BE GIVEN THE SAME TREATMENT: BEATINGS; ATTACKS; BITES; HANGINGS; ELECTROCUTIONS; DROWNINGS. GOING TO PRISON AND PAYING SOME MONEY IS AN EASY WAY OUT. THESE POOR ANIMAL VICTIMS SUFFERED A WHOLE LOT MORE THAN THAT! THERE SHOULD BE ABSOLUTELY NO/ZERO TOLERANCE FOR THE DISGUSTING PEOPLE WHO ENJOY SEEING ANIMALS SUFFER SO INCREDIBLY!!! LET THOSE PEOPLE SUFFER THE SAME WAY THOSE POOR INNOCENT ANIMALS DID!!

ROSE HUTCHINS

NO I DON'T THINK THAT IS ENOUGH TIME. I BET YOU THE DOGS THAT WERE MAIMED AND DIED DOESN'T THINK THAT IS ENOUGH TIME EITHER. THESE ABUSERS HAVE GOT TO GET THE MESSAGE THAT THE ANIMAL ABUSE HAS TO STOP. I DON'T THINK IT WILL UNTIL THE AUTHORITIES MAKE THE PUNISHMENT FIT THE CRIME. TAKE THE ABUSERS OUT AND DO THE EXACT SAME THING THAT THEY DID TO THE ANIMAL AND DO IT TO THE ABUSER AND THAT WOULD SEND A MESSAGE TO OTHER ABUSERS..HEY IF WE ABUSE AN ANIMAL WE WILL
HAVE THE SAME THING DONE TO US. I AM SURE THE ABUSE WOULD STOP...DON'T YOU?

Laurie Pulvers

I am so happy to hear the determination of finding these disgusting sub humans who do this animlals need to be put away for good. I am so elated to hear about this story and the rescue of these poor treated dogs. Bless you all for the incredible rescue and keep the work up.

ldrboyle

I have to say if convicted? No they have to be convicted or this evil dog fighting will never end. This has to stop and the laws have to be enforced! There are so many innocent animals being abused and something has to be done. This is good news to hear that a dog fighting ring has been busted.Thank to all involved in making this possible. The pressure has to be kept up on these thugs!

Barbara

Each person involved in the cruelty including the spectators should get life in prison. Even though prison is too kind, they get fed everyday and TV etc.. It should be eye for eye tooth for tooth instead. Penalties should be into the millions of dollars too.

Roberta Hopper

it should be 5 yrs for each dog harmed plus a fine for $250,000 including the ones they used to practice on...

robert timmons

If you made the penelties harcher you might put a stop to this bloodsport.Raid the fights. Dog owners get 20 years in jail with a $200,000 fine.Every person attending the event gets 5 years in jail and a $10,000 fine,no exseptions.Just being on the property when the event is going on makes you guilty of partisapation in the event.Pound the attenders of such fights into the ground like a tent stake.If you stop those betting,you'll stop the fights.

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