41 dogs rescued in police raid of dogfighting ring - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

41 dogs rescued in police raid of dogfighting ring

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - 41 dogs, mostly pit bulls, are about to get a new lease on life after being rescued from a dogfighting ring.

Police raided a dogfighting ring in Halifax County Wednesday.

Besides the animals, we now know drugs, guns, cash and dogfighting paraphernalia were also seized.

Authorities began investigating the ring after receiving complaints from neighbors nearly a year ago.

Each of the 41 pit bulls and beagles had a photo taken and an ID number assigned to them.

"We've certainly worked much, much larger operations," said Tim Rickey for the ASPCA. "We've worked smaller operations, but I will say for these 41 dogs, it's very substantial."

Authorities discovered the dogs after what started as a drug investigation...

"We believe dog fighting was taking place on the property, and also dogs were being bought and sold from the area," said Sheriff Stanley Noblin of Halifax County Police.

Noblin said, back in the woods, "there has been a pit, a possible pit located. Where the dogs would have been fought at."

Four men now have mug shots: Jonathan Williams, William Thaxton, Jermaine Thaxton and Levar Adams.

They are behind bars on a variety of charges relating to either drugs, guns, or dog fighting.

The victims in this case are behind bars too — safe in kennels.

All 41 dogs have been taken to an undisclosed location where a vet will check out their medical conditions and temperaments.

The goal is to eventually get them in rescues across the country and then adopted.

Copyright 2011 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.

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