Annapolis police arrested seven men on charges of dogfighting and animal cruelty Tuesday after officers found them in the woods behind the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals with three bloody and malnourished pit bulls.
A Victor Haven neighborhood watch member called police about 4:30 p.m. after seeing the men wandering through the woods near the Back Creek Nature Preserve with the dogs. When police arrived on the SPCA property in the 1800 block of Bay Ridge Ave., they saw a group huddled around the snarling dogs.
Morgan Jones III, 18, Ronald Young, 20, Tyrone Larking, 18, Shawn Pollard, 20, Wayne Blair, 19, and two juveniles were charged with cruelty to animals and dogfighting.
Blair also is charged with possession of crack cocaine and marijuana.
The dogs were bloody and their ribs were showing through their skin, police said. They were taken to Animal Control in Glen Burnie.
The dogs "were trained just to fight and I believe to the death," said Lt. Robert Beans, crime prevention coordinator. "They are known to attack children, other pets and animals."
The arrests come as the city council ponders a bill introduced by Alderman Cynthia A. Carter, a Ward 6 Democrat, that would require pit bull owners to be at least age 25 and to carry $500,000 in liability insurance. Under the bill, owners would have to pay a $100 registration fee to police within 48 hours of assuming ownership and provide a photo of the animal.
"Anybody who comes in contact with those dogs used for fighting are potentially in danger," said Carter. "The people that have those dogs cannot call them off."
Pub Date: 12/04/98