Columbia, SC – On July 12, Richland County deputies arrested a suspect after rescuing 16 dogs and 18 puppies from a dog fighting operation.
J. Anthony Green, 21, has been charged with simple possession of marijuana, resisting arrest, receiving stolen goods, threatening the life of a public official, and two counts of animal fighting and baiting.
According to Sheriff Leon Lott, while deputies were on patrol on July 12, they located a stolen motorcycle on a residential property. As the deputies walked towards the back of the home, they smelled a strong odor of marijuana coming from inside the house.
As the deputies got closer, Green tried to run away, but he was caught a short distance from the home, according to Lott.
The deputies recovered the stolen motorcycle and several stolen lawnmowers, a dual axle trailer, and a small amount of marijuana.
In addition to the stolen goods, deputies were able to rescue 16 dogs and 8 puppies, many of which were malnourished and neglected, according to the officers. Investigators said that they discovered a dog fighting pit and dog fighting paraphernalia inside a building located behind the house.
A weighted collar, a spring device, and heavy chains were recovered at the scene.
Richland County Animal Control was called to the scene and transported the dogs so they could receive proper medical treatment and care.
While Green was in custody, he kicked and bit one of the deputies and threatened the deputy's life and that of his family's. The deputy was treated for minor injuries by EMS.
Green was taken to Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center.
Penalties for Animal Fighting & Baiting
In South Carolina, the crime of animal fighting and baiting is covered under Sec. 16-27-10, otherwise known as "The Animal Fighting and Baiting Act."
Under this section, any person who owns an animal for the purpose of fighting or baiting, or is party to any fighting or baiting of an animal, or anyone who acquires any structure or location for fighting and baiting of any animal is guilty of a felony, punishable by a $5,000 fine, or 5 years in prison, or both.
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