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61 thoughts on “8-State Simultaneous Dogfighting Sting; 450 Dogs Seized

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  1. Due to the historic nature of this 8-state simultaneous dogfighting sting, we needed to interrupt our weeklong statistical review and report on it.

  2. Folks are chatting up a storm on the dogfighting boards:

    "i just talked to the wife of someone arrested today, but im not saying who. they want privacy. here is the REAL bad part. Feds sasy they are seizing property of anyone that dont snitch. That means house, car, and all thaqt. This crap is h itting the fan BIG TIME"

    Oops! seizure laws! (forget spelling)

  3. Guess we'll get to see what "loyalty" really means in the gamedog community when the Feds come for the assets. I predict people rolling over left and right and singing like canaries. This is just the beginning.

    My biggest question is what will happen to the maulspawn? I hope the HSUS isn't considering giving these champion fighting bloodline pits homes in quiet communities with unsuspecting rescue angels. The toll in human life and limb would be completely unacceptable, not to mention what would happen to neighboring pets.

  4. This Law was enacted two years ago and passed the US Senate 99-0…Yet these deviants continued trafficking the dogs.

    Can't wait to see these dogmen start rolling on each other!

    Pop Corn time!

    I wonder how dog killers are treated in Prison…one step above a pedophile perhaps?

  5. It is important to see that the people arrested included RNs, teachers, Little League Coaches. Big money Dog fighting is primarily a MIDDLE CLASS CRIME, and is highly organized.

    It involves huge amounts of money and gambling, RACKETEERING. It is middle class organized crime.

    It is tax evasion on a huge scale.

    These are some of the primary people lobbying against breed specific regulation, or any animal control laws!

    The money for the lobbying comes from the huge incomes from dog fighting.

    This is a business, and opposing regulation is part of the business. IT IS ALL ABOUT THE MONEY!

    And it is time that legislators stopped catering to these crooks, even though the crooks may form "responsible dog owner" groups and all the rest to try to hide their crimes and trick legislators.

  6. The HSUS is assisting in the busts, but the HSUS is not taking control of the dogs or their futures.

    That is going to be up to the shelters in the various states.

  7. The stuff being said on that dog fighting board is absolutely revolting. People are getting upset over "good dog men" being arrested. Ugh. These "dogmen" are people that get off on watching two animals tear each other apart for hours on end. How anyone could have sympathy for such subhuman scum is beyond me. They and their supporters are utter sadists, as they enjoy watching animals inflict pain on each other. They revere these "old time dog-men" whose big passion in life was/is to watch gruesome animal fights. It's disgusting.

    I noticed that law enforcement gets blamed when fighting dogs are put down. That's stupid – the degenerates who decided to breed dogs for extreme aggression (dog fights can last over an hour) are to blame for pit bull suffering, and especially the suffering fighting dogs can inflict on people. Notice also from the pit bull board that when a pit bull attacks someone, the dog fighters and their supporters worry more about laws that may regulate pit bulls rather than the person who was hurt or even killed. It's very screwed up.

    The other stupid thing is that they blame irresponsible owners for pit bull attacks, yet keeping a whole yard of pit bulls on chains is very common among the pit bull breeder crowd. Keeping and chaining up a bunch of dogs that were bred to kill other dogs for no reason is hardly anything good, respectable, responsible people do.

  8. We've truncated this comment to conserve space. This news story calls out exactly what is described above: Dogfighting is primarily a middle class crime that is highly organized and involves teachers, nurses and other respected members of the community.

    Raids in 6 States Show Dogfighting Widespread,2933,531306,00.html

    "The arrests this week of a Little League coach, a registered nurse and a teacher during the largest coordinated raids on dogfighting in U.S. history confirm the shadowy blood sport is alive and well…"

    "During raids on Wednesday in Texas, federal authorities seized nine pit bulls in rural Panola County and charged nine people, including a 34-year-old Little League coach, with involvement in an interstate dogfighting ring…"

    "Cris Bottcher, a 48-year-old registered nurse at a community hospital in Bethany, Missouri, also was arrested Wednesday in western Missouri and accused of shooting underperforming dogs and putting their carcasses in plastic containers outside a garage…"

    "Six others were also arrested in that raid including Rick Hihath, a 55-year-old physical education teacher at a state school for the severely disabled, the indictment said. He is accused of working and promoting fights at Bottcher's farm, it said…"

  9. The bottom line here is, this is MONEY. Big money gambling, massive tax cheating, sales from breeding, etc

    None of this big money is declared and taxes aren't paid on any of it.

    That is why these middle-class fighting dog people form lobbying groups to oppose regulation.

    Regulation means a cutback in their racketeering, dog sales, and gambling incomes.

    They want to stay unlicensed, underground, no rules. That's how the cash keeps pouring in.

  10. That news article above just goes to show that there are sadists among all economic classes. A lot of people think dogfighting is a lower class activity that's prominent primarily among urban black youth, but most of the big dog fighting operations are run by older white men. There are also a lot of young women who admire the fighting dogs produced by these dog men.

    The long, three-paragraph rant above is me and I realize it sort of meandered from topic to topic. It's just that the utter stupidity among the pit bull enthusiast crowd is just really floors me sometimes.

  11. I feel your pain, Anonymous. We all do. We are reaching a critical mass. I just hate to think of how many more humans will be sacrificed before these killer beasts are banned.

  12. At least one of them was also cheating the federal disability system. Collecting disability payments since 1995, but he is still able to run a fighting dog kennel and engage in game dog fighting!

    Meanwhile not declaring the income and not paying taxes.

    "Prosecutors say Hackman ran the Shake Rattle and Roll Kennel, Ruppel ran Ozark Hillbillys Kennel, Morgan ran Cannibal Kennel, and Creach ran Hard Goodbye Kennel.

    On Wednesday, Creach waited for a ride home outside the courthouse after a preliminary hearing. He declined to comment, other than to say, "I guess it's still America. I'm innocent until proven guilty, right?"

    Morgan told U.S. Magistrate Judge Audrey Fleissig that he is a self-employed contractor. His lawyer declined to comment after the hearing.

    Hackman told Fleissig that he was unemployed and had been receiving disability benefits since 1995.

    At Hackman's home on Highway 79 between Winfield and Foley, investigators hauled away boxes and crates of evidence. Neighbors said they knew Hackman kept dogs on his land, but never suspected he was involved in dogfighting.""

  13. Nebraska Humane Society reportedly has three of the dogs in their custody, per Mark Langan.

    "There not bad dogs, they were just put into a bad situatin."

    Mark Langan on local news.
    Would you want them to be owned by your neighbor?

  14. Dangerous dog legislation is, in fact, an anti-gang bill due to their use of pit bulls routinely as instruments of crime and violence.

    Not only do dog fighting rings distribute illegal narcotics and weapons (which will be used against citizens), these dogs are tortured beyond imagination-including FED CRUSHED GLASS prior to a fight making them more violent due to the agony. Pit bulls are bred like chickens adding to pet overpopulation epidemics; 70% of dogs impounded are pit bulls or pit bull mixes: most are euthanized at great cost to tax payers.

    Due to the massive pit bull dog fighting bust, I have forwarded these news articles to law makers in Florida in hopes, once again, for the third year in a row, to file a bill NOT restricting Florida municipalities to impose pit bull ordinances, known as "dangerous dog legislation" as an anti-gang, anti-dog fighting intervention.

    The recent dog fighting ring spanning different states and the feds confiscated 450 pit bulls from dog fighting rings only demonstrates how INEFFECTIVE anti-dog fighting laws are. It is already a federal crime to engage in dog fighting enterprises involving interstate activities-yet it is still common place. The only thing left is to regulate pit bulls via breed specific legislation like that of Miami Dade. That's the ONLY answer. The OWNERSHIP MUST BE REGULATED-otherwise it is like saying "it's okay to own cocaine but you can't use it". So you MUST regulate the item used (pitbulls) to make a dog fighting law work.

    450 pit bulls were confiscated, no doubt the pit bull zealots will try to "rehabilitate them" and more and more children will get torn to pieces-they CAN and oftentimes WILL "go postal" even after years of being "gentle and sweet". I guess in this country dogs have more rights than public safety and children.

  15. Little League acts fast!

    "ST. LOUIS — In a July 9 story about dogfighting raids, The Associated Press, relying on information from a defense attorney, erroneously reported that the defendant was a Little League coach. Little League spokesman Christopher Downs said the league checked with its regional office in Waco, Texas, and discovered that Karl Courtney of Beckville, Texas, was not among its coaches…"




  17. Makstaller trains Schutzhund!

    "Makstaller is a trainer with the Iowa Hundesport Club, a group of dog handlers who train for Schutzhund, a German dog sport involving tracking, obedience and protection. The group's Web site,, was abruptly disabled Wednesday."

    Website still in Google Cache:

  18. Another teacher:

    "Ryan Tasler is a high school science teacher and golf coach in the Madrid school district, according to prosecutors. He could not be reached for comment Wednesday. Madrid Superintendent Brian Horn said Tasler has been teaching there for about a year."

  19. Can't these people be prosecuted federally under the RICO Act? Couldn't a victim of a pit bull attack sue a pit bull breeder/dogfighter under RICO, since there is a provision for filing civil RICO actions?

    Why has this not been done?

  20. To dog fighting promotes violent crime

    What you have done is what honest citizens need to do!

    We have just been sitting by for too long letting these people cheat us AND endanger us

  21. I just sent the MO board of nursing the article regarding the RN that was busted for dog fighting, who happens to still be employed by the hospital. Sick, isn't it. I would not want that person anywhere around me or my loved ones. NO WAY, NO HOW!
    NOT IN A MILLION YEARS and that shows you what kind of hospital it is with such an obvious disregard for patient safety.

  22. These people keep trying to call dogfighting a "sport."

    It isn't a sport. Enjoyment is not primarily why they breed and fight these dogs, although clearly they do get a sick charge out of this torture.

    But the primary reason for dogfighting is MONEY. It's an underground business, like drug dealing and prostitution.

    Dogfighting is just another form of organized crime, although the fighters and breeders would love to convince people they respect dogs or other nonsense like that.

  23. if convicted of a felony, i don't think that either the nurse or the teacher will be allowed to work in their professions anymore. all that education down the drain.
    because they can't help themselves, it is a sick compulsion not unlike pedophilia. look at vick. such a promising career and he risked it all for what? the "excitement" of the game. only sick twisted evil people can not only watch that kind of suffering and not become ill but ENJOY it. these people are broken beyond repair.

  24. Well, I notified the Board of Nursing in MO,forwarding the news reports. Frankly it's frightening to think the hospital lets him still work around patients with those serious charges! I hope the Board of Nursing will at least suspend his license until outcome of his court.

  25. Wow!! My internet has been down for a couple of days so I was behind. I'm just waiting to see where Best Fiends and Winograd will stand on rehabbing these dogs, if they will take them without money. Or they will stand there and yell about putting the dogs down. Big hit for the pit nutters and can't think of any group that deserves it more.

  26. Oh Best Friends is up to bat! They are even defying Randall Lockwood and the ASPCA:,0,7214950.story

    "Animal behaviorist Randall Lockwood, who helped evaluate Vick's dogs, believes the operations busted this week produced more fighters than Vick. If true, that could mean fewer dogs can be saved, said Lockwood, an executive with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals."

    "…Not all dogs involved in dogfighting are aggressive, said Ledy VanKavage…"It just shows you that dogs are individuals."

  27. Begging the question, when one of these wigglbutts escape a nd kill an unlucky neighbors dog, who goes to prison for animal cruelty?

    Ledy, Randy, or the useful dupe who took in the dog?

  28. How will the counties get around the liability if they hand these dogs out to people like Vankavage, Bad Rap, MK Kain, and the others that will adopt them out and let these dogs maul and kill people?

  29. It's unknown! We do know, is that in the instance of the Vick dogs, the United States ordered each recipient of his dogs to have a 1 million dollar insurance policy.

    "Michael Vick: Appointing Guardian Special Master of Remaining Pit Bulls" (pages 3 and 4)

  30. Since Best Friends was ordered by a judge to get this liability insurance, can the public demand that they show proof of this liability insurance?

  31. "Best Friends" are extreme pit pull zealots-they are, in fact, BEST FRIENDS to dog fighters and thugs due to the "pit bull rights". It is because of their hard work to FIGHT breed specific legislation that individuals can breed as many pit bulls as they like, much to the delight of dog fighters. In my quest to get Breed Specific Legislation introduced, I find myself having to fight-NOT the law makers, but the billions of pit bull zealots who think pitties should be bred as much as possible. They FLOOD law makers with emails and letters and calls-and all they are doing is maintaing the rights of dog fighters to BREED PIT BULLS. These "animal activists" are really dog fighter activists. NOW they all want these dogs "rehabilitated" meanwhile what about the 20 million poor adoptable puppies, kittens, dogs, and cats that will be slaughtered in dog pounds throughout the USA, every year, costing tax payers $2.5 BILLION dollars a year. No mention of them. It's all for the pitties taken from dog fighting rings-yeah, adopt them out. THey don't even consider for a second these dogs may indeed go POSTAL even after years of being "gentle and sweet" and they make lunch out of some poor kid and eat their scalp.

    THESE PIT BULL ZEALOTS FORGET-there is ALREADY a felony in every state in the nation, and illegal FEDERALLY for dog fighting interstate activities-yet it goes on everywhere. PIT BULL FIGHTING IS AS COMMON AS FOOTBALL AND APPLE PIE IN THIS COUNTRY!!! I KID YOU NOT!!!

    Bottom line: "Punish the deed, not the breed" +++DOES NOT WORK+++ In addition to strict anti-dog fighting laws, there MUST be strict laws or REGULATIONS regarding the ownership of pit bulls.


    These pit bull zealots JUST DON'T GET IT. They have NO IDEA just how much damage and cruelty they inflict on pit bulls by keeping them UNREGULATED-which is keeping the dog fighters well supplied with pit bulls.

  32. From the fightin crowd (who claims they just "love pit bulls")

    "This is no joke! If one is smart they will pull their info off the web and lay low. Change your numbers. Move your dogs. Stop talking!

    This has happened b/c ppl were talking and the wrong ppl at that. Information gets passed along, you hit their radar and walla you are being looked at. What you think your friends wont do to save their own ass….yeah thats right, these f8cks have the power to break you!


  33. "Best Friends" are extreme pit pull zealots-they are, in fact, BEST FRIENDS to dog fighters and thugs"

    You are right on target, dfpvc

    Best Friends is HELPING dog fighters breed and torture more dogs!!!!!

  34. To dog fighting promtes violent crime- your whole post is just right on it!!

    "These pit bull zealots JUST DON'T GET IT. They have NO IDEA just how much damage and cruelty they inflict on pit bulls by keeping them UNREGULATED-which is keeping the dog fighters well supplied with pit bulls."

    This is EXCACTLY what all these pit bull "advocates" are doing. They are HELPING more and more pit bulls get bred, tortured, abused, killed.

    Ledy Vankavage should get cited for enabling and advocating animal abuse, because that is just what she is doing with her breeder groups (that also have ties to dog fighting)

  35. Lockwood made the issue clear: "[He] believes the operations busted this week produced more fighters than Vick." This is a nice way of saying that Vick was not a breeder of MULTI-generational fighting dogs. The man was a "fair weather" breeder (if Vick was ever considered one at all) in comparison to Cannibal Kennel, Shake Rattle and Roll Kennel and Hard Goodbye Kennel. The dogs seized from the latter locations literally stand no chance of being "rehabilitated," nor will any of their puppies. Recall that pit bulls do not reach maturity until about 1.5 years old. There is NO WAY to evaluate the temperament of these puppies until they reach that age. The pit bull puppy with an abusive background (or was seized at a dogfighting raid) that was adopted out by the Albany-based organization Out of the Pits, BERSERKED at the age of 1.5 and nearly killed Frankie Flora. "Berserked" is likely the wrong terminology, as the dog hit maturity, it simply did was it was bred to do: ATTACK, hold on and shake, and to CONTINUE attacking for nearly 20 minutes….

  36. I'm more impressed with Vick's lucky 9 Beagles who were spared from baiting duty. They were absorbed by the Beagle community wihout much fanfare..and without a huge dowry /mandatory insurance requirements.

    Expect the Pit Community to request Federal Funding to rehabilitate these "media dogs"…While MariDopa County euthanizes 10,000 Pits annually!

  37. About 500 dogs seized now:

    "The number of dogs being sheltered in St. Louis following raids in Illinois and Missouri last week now stands at 407, including 14 born since the raids…"

    "An additional 70 to 100 dogs were seized in Oklahoma, Texas, Mississippi, Iowa and Nebraska, bringing the total to roughly 500 dogs in the largest dogfighting seizure in U.S. history."

  38. The Nutter advocacy groups are already seeking to obtain these dogs and "pencil whip them into Therapy Dogs. The problem they fail to see is that advocacy in lieu of proper breed stewardship is just a dog and pony show!

    Tha maulings will continue while new maulers are bred. The problem isn't not enough advocacy. It is breeding standards, and as we've seen here, they are criminal!

  39. These pit bull zealots want the government to spend money on their "rehabilitation" completely oblivious of the 20 million cats, dogs, puppies and kittens that are ROUTINELY killed in dog pounds often with gas, even using strychnine poisoning-not due to dog fighting-but irresponsible people letting them breed. ALL of those pit bulls were exposed to horrendous cruelty-no telling when they can go postal even years from now-so they should be immediately destroyed and NOT waste our resources on "rehabilitating" them while so many millions get destroyed in dog pounds due to being unwanted and homeless-nothing to do with dog fighting. These pit bull zealots are idiots and need to get a life.

  40. So, will the court hand these dogs over to unlicensed, uninsured people like MK Kain, who are not registered as any charity or organization, who have no liability insurance, to hand out or SELL to the public?

    (Remember she had Patron listed as for sale on classified pet sale websites.)

    Will unaltered dogs from this raid find their way back into the dog fighter's hands through fake "rescue groups" that take these dogs from the court and then do what they want with them? Put them right back into breeding and fighting programs.

    Best Friends has advocated handing fighting bust dogs to unlicensed individuals like Kain and undocumented groups. There is no oversight. Best Friends themselves handed "rescued" pit bulls to a hoarder who killed them and defrauded the public by asking for donations for these "rescued" pit bulls that he had killed!

    Best Friends has ZERO credibility when it comes to pit bulls, and dogs from fighting busts in particular.

    With the Vick dogs, they are defying the court's orders when they were expressly told NOT to use the Vick dogs for fundraising, but they have been using these pit bulls for fundraising since they got the dogs! This denial of fundraising use was written in the judge's orders, and Best Friends is breaking a court order.

    A big fear here is that dog fighters and their relatives who weren't busted are going to form fake rescue groups, and use Best Friends to "recommend" them as places to send the dogs.

  41. Will Best Friends be trying to extract taxpayer money from these courts to have their associates hired as fake "experts" to "evaluate" the dogs?

    Will this be a business opportunity for Best Friends?

    Will they be using this bust to fundraise?

    The "evaluators" for Best Friends advocate placing aggressive and dog-aggressive dogs, not to mention that evaluations are useless when it comes to these fighting breeds.

  42. Will Ledy VanKavage take PERSONAL liability for these dogs as she advocates placing them in homes, and warrantees them by claiming they pass behavior tests?

    She is the one making these statements- that these dogs can and should be placed.

    Does she have the personal liability insurance to back up her warrantee of these dogs?

  43. I already heard of a few cases where children were attacked by these "rehabilitated dogs". Of course there is no liability-in reality it should be CRIMINAL to put dangerous dogs in the community. Because it IS. Sometimes children die from these attacks; most of the time they require emergency room treatment and/or hospitalization and surgery! Reconstructive surgery is NOT covered by most insurance companies but that's nothing compared to the pain and suffering, and permanent psychological damage these dogs inflict. It SHOULD be criminal to put these dogs out in the general public.

  44. PLEASE SIGN MY PETITION TO MAKE ALL DOG FIGHTING A FEDERAL CRIME NOT RESTRICTED TO INTERSTATE INVOLVEMENT. Pit bulls are still dogs, and they don't deserve to be tortured and exploited. The recent pitbull dog fighting ring, so far, 500 dogs were confiscated from such rings. Dog fighting is as common as FOOTBALL and apple pie; illegal drugs, and illegal firearms are exchanged in dog fighting rings which will be used in armed robberies.


  45. I asked a pitbull apologist if she had liability insurance. She said she didnt' have to because her "pibble" had a Good Citizenship Certificate.

    Pathetic. They say over and over that it's bad irresponsible owners that are the problem, yet they rarely truely act responsibly themselves, by NUMBER ONE: admitting that pit bulls are a vicious unpredictable killing machine that can cause horrible damage and death to other human beings, and therefore == getting liability insurance.

  46. "said she didnt' have to because her "pibble" had a Good Citizenship Certificate"

    That won't save her when she's in court.

  47. I wonder if she lived in a place where the dog laws state that she doesn't have to have insurance if her pitbull passes one of those tests. And we all know how reliable those tests are…

  48. If the AKC is warranteeing pit bulls with heir hokey "tests" then the AKC needs to take on the liability for these dogs!

    Of course the Good Citizen tests are worthless, especially with regard to aggression.

    But it looks like the AKC is willing to put the seal of appreovals on pit bulls, so they can take the liability.

  49. The HSMO is doing a "foot" test on the dogs to see if they are "aggressive." Why does this feel like a hokey piece of nonsense? How on earth does a FOOT TEST MEASURE POTENTIAL DOG-AGGRESSION?

    "The Humane Society of St. Louis is facing a huge task after a dog fighting ring bust. Workers must evaluate more than more 400 pit bulls. Teams made up of at least three people will go through a series of tests to evaluate each dog to see if it has any behavioral problems…One thing they'll do in the evaluation is handle the dog's feet to see how it responds. Is it aggressive or passive? They have more than a dozen items on a check-list to go over…"

  50. Evaluating 500 dogs. That's utterly ridiculous-they should be IMMEDIATELY euthanized. These were exposed to dog fighting and even if they "pass every test" they can still go POSTAL years from now.

    20 million unwanted dogs, cats, puppies and kittens get killed in pounds every year throughout America because there aren't enough homes for them all and has NOTHING to do with dog fighting. WHY SHOULD THESE PIT BULLS GET SPECIAL ATTENTION! That's total and idiotic malarkey. EUTHANIZE THESE FIGHTING DOGS! That's why they are called "pit bulls for" like duhhh..

  51. Pit Bulls Crowd Shelter; Outnumber Adoptable Dogs After Seizure:

    "Leaders of the Columbus-Lowndes Humane Society are disappointed to see pit bulls taking up so many of the shelter’s cages. Two seizures of pit bulls in Lowndes County last week added to the tally of pit bulls and pit bull mixes residing at the shelter, bringing the total to about 40, executive director Karen Johnwick said. Meanwhile, she said, the shelter contains 54 cages.

    “If we have 40 pit bulls here, that’s just ridiculous,” she said. “There is just no reason we should 40 pit bulls here.” She and her colleagues may not allow people to adopt pit bulls from the shelter, even if not all of them are fighting dogs. And so, at least for now, pit bulls and pit bull mixes outnumber adoptable dogs, she said.:

  52. Best Friends does not appear to be involved in the "non dowry" rescue of the 400+ pit bulls:

    "Groups involved so far in these efforts include Mutts-n-Stuff, based in Missouri; Our Pack, based in California; Broken Hearts, Mended Souls, based in Missouri;, an online rescue resource; Brew City Bully Club, based in Wisconsin; Dumb Friends League, based in Colorado; Whole Rotta Love, based in Minnesota; and New Hope Pit Bull Rescue, based in South Carolina."

  53. Madrid Teacher Fired Following Dog Fighting Raid

    "A Madrid High School teacher has lost his job after being indicted on dogfighting charges. The Madrid School Board voted Friday to terminate Ryan Tasler's contract, effective immediately. Tasler was one of four Iowans arrested in a dogfighting raid. He and the other three defendants pleaded not guilty and are scheduled to stand trial on Monday. Tasler was a science teacher and golf coach at the school.,0,972894.story

  54. It's been obvious for all of this time that rescues enable dogfighters and the FBI is seemingly doing nothing to stop it.
    Why aren't they looking at BFAS? The network partners number over two thousand operations across the United States.
    It seems like they would be so easy to catch. Follow the dogs pulled off of death row by the rescue angels. Search their transport vehicles. X-Ray and sonogram the dogs.
    If fifty countries ban pit bulls and the USA breeds them in massive amounts, wouldn't it make sense to think the USA exports Pit Bulls?
    They probably sterilize most of them, beforehand, so there will always be a demand.The USA has the supply.

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