Friday, December 9, 2016

North Carolina: 156 fighting dogs seized, ten men arrested on animal cruelty, dog fighting and drug charges

NORTH CAROLINA -- Authorities seized 156 dogs and arrested several men accused of fighting dogs and betting hundreds of thousands of dollars on fights, many of which ended in the dogs’ death or serious injury.

The Tuesday arrests included eight men accused of being involved with dog fights and two others accused of selling cocaine, crack, and heroin.

There were 10 men arrested this week, eight accused of training and conditioning dogs for fighting and two accused of selling and distributing drugs.


• Lewis Edmond Andrews Jr. (Lewis Andrews), 41, of Maple Hill, was arrested on numerous dog fighting and drug charges. He has an upcoming Dec. 14 court date for a driving while his license was revoked, according to N.C. Courts.

He has previously been convicted of possession with intent to sell a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance in September 2003 as well as failure to notify the DMV of a change of address in November 2010, both of which he received probation for, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.

• Ronnie Jeremy Thompson (Ronnie Thompson, Ron Thompson, Ronald Thompson), 39, of Jacksonville was charged with numerous dog fighting charges. He has previously been convicted of felony trafficking a schedule II substance in April 2006 for which he received a suspended sentence of probation, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.


• Mark Anthony West (Mark West), 52, of Jacksonville was arrested on dog fighting and drug charges. He has previously been convicted of assault and communicating threats in November 1999, for which he received a suspended sentence of probation, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.

He was convicted of manslaughter in July 2005 and was released from prison in June of 2011.

• Leo Chadwick, 63, of Hubert was arrested on dog fighting charges. He has not been previously convicted of any crimes in North Carolina, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.

• Aaron “Jit” Richardson (Aaron Richardson, Jit Richardson), 41, of Jacksonville was arrested on dog fighting charges. He has not been previously convicted of any crimes in North Carolina, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.

• Cedric Gerard Cook (Cedric Cook), 38, of Fayetteville was arrested on dog fighting charges. He has previously been convicted of possession of a schedule VI substance in October 2007 for which he received a suspended sentence of probation, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.


• James David Martin (Jim Martin, James Martin), 38, of Maple Hill was arrested for allegedly violating the animal welfare act and attending animal fighting. He has an upcoming court date of Jan. 26 for charged of driving while his license was revoked, operating a vehicle without insurance, and having a canceled, revoked, or suspended certificate of title or tag, according to N.C. Courts.

He has previously been convicted of larceny in March 1996, maintaining a place for a controlled substance in October 1997, and possession with intent to sell a schedule VI substance in February 2000, all of which he received probation for, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.


• James Leslie Golden II (James Golden, Jim Golden), 46, of Ayden was charged with attending a dog fight. He has upcoming court dates for unsafe movement on Jan. 13 and speeding on Feb. 21, according to N.C. Courts.

• Randall “Slim” Jacob James (Randall James, Slim James), 32, of Maple Hill was arrested on drug charges. He has previously been convicted of possession with intent to sell a schedule II substance in September 2005, for which he received probation, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.


• William “Bo” Jay Farrior (Willie Farrior, Bo Farrior, Bill Farrior, Billy Farrior), 36, of Maple Hill was arrested on drug charges. He has previously been convicted of possession with intent to sell a schedule II substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, and possession of a schedule II substance in February 2005, and possession of a schedule II substance in June 2013, all of which he received a suspended sentence of probation for, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.


The eight men are accused of conducting and attending the fights since October 2015 in eastern North Carolina, according to the indictment.

The indictment listed a number of specific dates of the men’s alleged involvement.

On Dec. 17, 2015, Andrews and Cook allegedly met to discuss dog fighting, breeding and conditioning before weighing a Pit Bull-type dog from a strap attached to the ceiling in preparation of a fight, according to the indictment.

On Dec. 19, 2015, Martin is accused of hosting a dog fight in Richlands after being paid by Andrews to do so, according to the indictment. Andrews, Cook, Golden and others are accused of constructing the fighting pit used. Andrews allegedly bet $1,000 on his Pit Bull-type dog Blondie in the fight as Blondie allegedly fought a dog from New York, according to the indictment. Blondie won and the owners of the losing dog used a gun and shovel to kill and bury the dog.

On Jan. 2, Thompson allegedly used a Pit Bull-type dog named Preacher in a “champion” fight, meaning the dogs involved had each won at least three previous fights, according to the indictment. Thompson allegedly bet $30,000 on the fight between Preacher and another dog named Pee Wee. Preacher won the fight, according to the indictment, and Pee Wee died as a result of his injuries. On the same day, Andrews is accused of meeting with an unknown person to sell a dog for $5,000.

On Feb. 6, the indictment states Chadwick allegedly had 30 Pit Bull-type dogs on his property that he was training and conditioning for fights using a treadmill and a “flirt pole,” which is used to condition dogs to chase a fast-moving lure.

Chadwick, Thompson and West allegedly took a Pit Bull-type dog named Nancy to Harrellsville for a fight, according to the indictment. Nancy won the fight while her opponent, Zelda, was hurt badly.

On Feb. 18, the N.C. Highway Patrol pulled over a Kia minivan allegedly occupied by Richardson, Andrews and an unnamed female who were traveling from Oklahoma after buying Pit Bull-type dogs, according to the indictment. Several dogs were allegedly in crates in the back of the vehicle.

On March 12, Thompson and Chadwick are accused of taking a Pit Bull-type dog named Uno to Halifax for a fight, according to the indictment. Chadwick allegedly placed a bet on the fight for West. Uno was allegedly pitted against Half Face, according to the indictment, and Uno lost.

Numerous Pit Bull-type dogs were found on a property owned by Andrews in October and November 2015, according to the indictment.

On Oct. 12, 15-to-20 Pit Bull-type dogs were found on property allegedly occupied by Thompson and Richardson, according to the indictment. Treadmills and dog medications, like steroids, were also found on the property.

On Oct. 13, approximately 15 Pit Bull-type dogs, many malnourished, and dog fighting paraphernalia were allegedly found on property owned by Chadwick, according to the indictment.

On Oct. 23, approximately 31 Pit Bull-type dogs and dog fighting paraphernalia, including a treadmill, were allegedly found on property owned by Andrews, according to the indictment.

In addition to dog fighting, Andrews is accused of having at least 28 grams of a mixture containing crack and cocaine, according to the indictment. Farrior and James were accused of having at least 28 grams of a mixture containing crack and cocaine.

The men accused of involvement in the dog fights are required to forfeit any animals involved with the offenses and any land or property is subject to forfeiture, according to the indictment.

Search warrants covered four properties where dogs used for fights and dog fighting paraphernalia was suspected to be, according to the release, and approximately 156 dogs were seized and are now being cared for by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Don Connelly, the public information officer for the Eastern District of N.C., said he was unable to comment more about the case, including how many dogs died as a result of the fights, if there is a potential for additional charges against the men or additional people charges, and how authorities became involved.

Connelly was also unable to comment on the types of injuries or how many recovered dogs were injured.

The dogs are currently in a temporary, undisclosed location, according to the release.

The Onslow County Sheriff’s Office, Jacksonville Police Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation were involved in the investigation.

(JD News - Dec 7, 2016)

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