Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Two Raids on Suspected Dog Fighting Operations

Jerry Carnes

MONTGOMERY CO., Ga. -- Authorities in Montgomery County, Georgia, were busy seizing animals in one raid on a suspected dog fighting operation, when they got a tip about another one.

It's an area of Georgia where they grow sweet Vidalia onions. Now, 45-year-old Kenneth Jordan of the town of Higgston is accused of cultivating cruelty.

Investigators found twenty-two pit bulls in the woods off of a dirt road. They confiscated the animals, including a mom and her nine pups, one of them near death.

Some of the animals are malnourished, dehydrated, and carry the scars of a fighter.

In addition to the dogs, authorities found what look to be about a dozen graves.

"He (Jordan) says he loves his dogs and never fought them," says Chuck Simmons of Norred and Associates, the private security firm that checked out a tip about the dogs. "Look at this place. Who has a pet with a 40-pound logging chain? Who has dogs chained in the woods, emaciated and dehydrated?"

The howling of the animals could be heard through the woods at a nearby trailer park.

"Pine trees is all it looks like," says neighbor Michael Helms. "You have to look hard to see. It's pretty gruesome."

It's the first time Sheriff Clarence Sanders has seen anything like it. He suspects it's going on in other parts of his county.

"I suspect some are less than five miles from here," says Sanders.

Less than two hours after saying that, someone tips the sheriff to another possible dog fighting operation. A half-mile away, authorities find eighteen more dogs. Sheriff Sanders is looking for the owner.

It's at least the fourth time in two months that authorities in Georgia have raided suspected dog fighting operations. Chuck Simmons says the number of tips to their toll free tip line is increasing.

The hotline number is 1-877-215-2250.

Kenneth Jordan faces multiple counts of dog fighting and cruelty to animals. There's been no arrest in the second raid.