Attorney General Tong Moves for State Custody of Pit Bulls Seized in Orange Dog Fighting Raid
Latest Development in Ongoing Multistate Police Action
(Hartford, CT) – Attorney General William Tong is seeking state custody of seven pit bulls seized in a raid of an Orange property suspected of operating as part of a multistate illegal dog fighting ring. Today’s action is the latest development in an ongoing police investigation.
“Dog fighting is cruel and illegal. No animal should ever be treated this way. This is an active and ongoing criminal investigation, and I will continue to work closely with police and the Department of Agriculture to ensure the safe care of each and every dog recovered,” said Attorney General Tong.
“We appreciate the swift action of our State Animal Control officers in coordination with the Connecticut State Police to remove these animals from an unhealthy situation where their safety was in jeopardy, and Attorney General Tong’s actions to make sure they remain in a safe place” said Agriculture Commissioner Bryan P. Hurlburt. “Dog fighting is a heinous crime that we all take very seriously. Anyone who suspects dog fighting is happening should report it to the proper authorities.”
Connecticut State Police raided a property at 968 Grassy Hill Road in Orange on October 5, seizing seven pit bulls found in unsanitary cages in a backyard. Attorney General Tong secured an order granting the Department of Agriculture temporary care and custody. They are being cared for at the Milford Animal Shelter.
Today’s petition seeks permanent state custody of the dogs, named Vera, Angie, Zebra, Sypher, Mugshot, Horris, and Lucy. The dogs were suffering from ear and eye infections and malnutrition, and have scars likely caused by bite wounds.
Police also found at the property numerous record books, including a list of approximately 80 dogs potentially involved in dog fighting. Police also uncovered dog fighting guides and magazines, breeder information, scales, collars, and veterinary grade equipment and medicine believed to be associated with the illegal dog fighting ring.
Connecticut State Police had previously raided a property at 109 Britannia Street in Meriden on July 31, seizing eight pit bulls found in cages in a backyard. Evidence seized in that raid, including a text message chain with videos of dog and cock fighting operations, led police to the Orange property.
Attorney General Tong previously moved for state custody of the Meriden dogs. That custody case is pending. The dogs are currently in the care of the Milford Animal Shelter.
Assistant Attorney General Daniel Salton and Matthew Levine, Deputy Associate Attorney General/Chief of the Environment Section are assisting the Attorney General in this matter.