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June 1, 2009

Alabama Dogfighting Bust

Two raids targeted alleged dogfighters

The Humane Society of the United States

  • Scarred pit bulls were whisked away to safety. Chad Sisneros/The HSUS 

  • Investigators found injured dogs. Chad Sisneros/The HSUS

  • The HSUS helped with the investigation and handling of dogs. Chad Sisneros/The HSUS

Today, authorities raided two alleged dogfighting operations in Randolph County, Ala.

The district attorney for Alabama's Fifth Judicial Circuit, E. Paul Jones, led the raid in which authorities arrested two people and confiscated 45 dogs along with dogfighting paraphernalia.

The Humane Society of the United States supplied information that led to Monday's actions. Information regarding these alleged dogfighting operations was first provided to The HSUS via its tip line, 877-TIP-HSUS.

The HSUS animal fighting tip line was established by Norred & Associates Inc., a corporate security and investigations firm based in Atlanta, Ga.

Alleged Long-Time Dogfighter in Newell, Ala.

William Alsabrook, the apparent owner of the operation in Newell, Ala., was charged with two counts of possession of dogs for fighting. Authorities seized a total of 25 dogs from the property, some showing scars consistent with dogfighting, and dogfighting paraphernalia.

HSUS intelligence indicates that Alsabrook sold dogs nationwide since the 1970s.

Suspected Drugs and Dogfighting in Roanoke, Ala.

Artis Kyle, the apparent owner of the operation in Roanoke, Ala., was charged with one count of possession of dogs for fighting, two counts of possession of a controlled substance, one count of possession of drug paraphernalia and one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Authorities seized 20 dogs along with dogfighting paraphernalia from the property. Some of the dogs had scars consistent with dogfighting.

Criminal Industry; Dedicated Law Enforcement

"Dogfighting is a criminal underground industry that breeds horrible animal suffering and violence," said Mindy Gilbert, Alabama state director for The Humane Society of the United States.

She also praised other agencies and individuals involved in the busts. "We commend the District Attorney's office for Alabama's Fifth Judicial Circuit and Fifth Judicial Circuit Drug Task Force, led by Aris Murphy and David Cofield, for their unwavering commitment to rooting out illegal animal fighting in our state," she said.

Dr. Melinda Merck, forensic veterinarian and leader of American Society for the Protection of Cruelty to Animals' CSI Unit, assisted with the raid and evaluated the seized dogs for evidence of animal fighting. Sumter Disaster Animal Response Team Inc. assisted with the handling and transportation of the dogs.

What You Can Do

Learn to spot the signs of dogfighting in your community, and how you can take action to stop it.

If you're sure you know of dogfighting nearby, The HSUS offers rewards for tips that lead to a conviction.

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