Thursday, November 20, 2008

Property owners to finance care for dogs

By Tom Smith
Senior Staff Writer


Published: Wednesday, November 19, 2008 at 3:30 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, November 18, 2008 at 10:32 p.m.
WAYNESBORO, TENN. - The man and woman who own the property where law enforcement broke up a large dog-fighting operation Sunday have been ordered to put up money to take care of the dogs that were confiscated.

Wayne County Sheriff Ric Wilson said that during their initial court appearance, Mitchell Beasley, 43, and his live-in girlfriend, Lindy Louise Andrews, 43, were ordered to put up the bond money for the care of the animals.

"They have 10 days to get the bond money up," Wilson said.

The sheriff said bonds were also established at $25,000 cash each or $75,000 property each.

"If they do get out, they can't go back to the property until we get the dogs properly cared for," Wilson said.

He said a deputy has been staying at the property with the animals since they were confiscated Saturday night.

Beasley and Andrews were each charged with 22 counts of aggravated animal cruelty and 22 counts of dog fighting.

The sheriff's office and Waynesboro police raided the residence Saturday night. They found 27 pit bulldogs, five of which were puppies.

Wilson said all of the dogs had scars from when they had been fought.

On Monday evening, while searching the residence off Rasberry Hollow Road, north of Waynesboro, Wilson said authorities found evidence where dogs had been killed and buried.

Wilson said deputies found a dog wrapped and frozen inside a chest freezer in the house.

"There were deer parts inside the freezer - at first we thought this carcass was deer until we saw the dog collar still on the animal," Wilson said.

Authorities said that outside the residence deputies found a bag of bones inside a burn barrel, scattered bones and evidence where dead animals had been buried.

"There were spots where they had put lime on the soil trying to cover up the areas where the dogs had been buried," Wilson said. "To be honest, it was an awful sight, just gruesome."

Wilson said that while the investigation continues, the immediate need is to place the confiscated dogs. He said plans are to talk with the Humane Society to take charge of the animals.

"We hope that each one can be saved. At one time, there is no doubt they were beautiful animals," Wilson said. "It's just sickening to think about what has happened to them and what they have been through."

Tom Smith can be reached at 740-5757 or tom.smith@TimesDaily.com.

No comments: