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Tag: hung

Pit bull burned and hung for chewing Bible

A South Carolina woman says God advised her to hang and burn her nephew’s pit bull because it had chewed her Bible and was a “devil dog,” according to animal control officers.

Miriam Fowler Smith, 65, of Pacolet Mills, S.C., remained in jail Tuesday morning in Spartanburg County, charged with felony animal cruelty, the Charlotte Observer reported.

Smith’s nephew, Andy Fowler, said he originally thought his dog, Diamond, had broken its leash and got away. But when he confronted his aunt, officers said, she admitted killing the dog.

Officers searched the property around the house and said they found the dog’s burned body under a mound of leaves and grass.

The police report said officers found an orange extension cord wrapped around the dog’s neck and noticed a kerosene smell.

Smith was arrested Sunday and charged with one count of ill treatment of animals.

Gucci, the dog that changed Alabama’s law

gucciGucci, the dog who helped make animal abuse a felony in Alabama, died Wednesday.

Doug James — Gucci’s rescuer and owner — said he made the difficult decision to euthanize the dog, who recently turned 16.

“I had dreaded it, and put if off for two or three days,”  James, who lives in Mobile told the Times Daily. “His kidneys were failing him.”

James caught some youths torturing the chow-husky mix one night in 1994. The youths hanged the dog by his neck and set him on fire.

The incident triggered a campaign for animal rights that resulted in the Pet Protection Act, better known as the “Gucci Law,” in Alabama.

The act , making animal cruelty a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison, was signed by then-Gov. Don Siegelman on May 19, 2000 – the sixth anniversary of the attack – as Gucci looked on.

Gucci’s celebrity continued after that, with appearances at schools, on ”The Maury Povich Show” and “Inside Edition.” He also played played “Sandy” in Mobile theatrical productions of “Little Orphan Annie.”

The dog was only 12 weeks old when he was beaten, hung in a tree by his neck, doused with lighter fluid and set on fire.  Two of the three abusers received sentences of community service, while a third — the lone adult — was sentenced to six months in jail.

“If ever there was a dog that should hate people it should be Gucci, but he loved everyone,” said Brenda Cashdollar, vice president of Friends of the Mobile Animal Shelter.

Cashdollar told Al.com that Gucci was unable to walk by the time of his 15th birthday, but still wagged his tail in response to those who greeted him. A party planned to mark his 16th birthday Saturday at B&B Pet Stop in Mobile will now serve as a memorial event, organizers said.

Gucci will be cremated, James said, and his ashes will be placed in a memorial garden planned at the Mobile Animal Shelter.

Dead pit bull found in bag hanging from tree

Animal control officers in Connecticut are asking for the public’s help in solving the mystery of a dead pit bull found in a trash bag hanging from a tree near a highway.

Authorities say bloody clothing, needles and syringes were also in the bag, found near a highway in the town of Orange on Saturday. It’s not clear how the dog, a 1- to 2-year-old female, died, according to the Register Citizen in Litchfield County.

The pit bull had puncture wounds on its shoulder and officials are looking into whether it was used in dogfighting rings. A necropsy is being conducted at the University of Connecticut.

The resident who found the bag called police about 12:30 p.m. Saturday. Officers took pictures of the bag in the tree and left it with the resident, who buried the dog with the bag and its other contents in his yard, Assistant Animal Control Officer Linda Schaff said.

After being called about the incident, Schaff went to pick up the dog Sunday, which is when the resident disinterred the animal and turned it over to her.

Anyone with information on the dog is asked to call the shelter at 203-389-5991.

NFL offers Vick a second chance

Michael Vick, after serving 18 months for operating a dogfighting ring, was conditionally reinstated to the NFL today.

Vick can immediately take part in preseason practices, workouts and meetings and can play in the final two preseason games — if he can find a team that will sign him.

A number of teams have already said they would not.

Once the season begins, Vick may participate in all team activities except games, but NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said he would consider Vick for full reinstatement by Week 6 of the season, at the latest, according to ESPN.

Goodell suspended Vick indefinitely in August 2007 after the former Atlanta Falcons quarterback admitted bankrolling a dogfighting operation on his property in Virginia. At the time, Goodell said Vick must show remorse before he would consider reinstating him.

“I accept that you are sincere when you say that you want to, and will, turn your life around, and that you intend to be a positive role model for others,” Goodell said in his letter to Vick. “I am prepared to offer you that opportunity. Whether you succeed is entirely in your hands.”

“Needless to say, your margin for error is extremely limited,” the letter said. “I urge you to take full advantage of the resources available to support you and to dedicate yourself to rebuilding your life and your career. If you do this, the NFL will support you.”

“I do recognize that some will never forgive him for what he did,” Goodell said.

Vick, once the highest-paid player in the league, said he was grateful for a second chance.

Vick pleaded guilty after his three co-defendants had already done so. They told of how Vick participated in the killing of dogs that didn’t perform well in test fights by shooting, hanging, drowning or slamming them to the ground.

Vick’s appearances at federal court in Richmond, Va., prompted large groups of protesters to gather outside. Many were with PETA and held signs depicting photographs of pit bulls ravaged in dogfights. Some supporters showed up as well, some wearing his No. 7 jersey.

Vick hung and drowned dogs, report says

Suspended Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick used family pets as “bait dogs” to train his pit bulls, and he took part in hanging three fighting dogs who did not perform well, according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture report.

The 17-page report, released Friday, provided new details on Vick’s participation in Bad Newz Kennels — including the revelation that pet dogs were used for training purposes, according to an ESPN report.

“Vick, (Purnell) Peace and (Quanis) Phillips thought it was funny to watch the pit bull dogs belonging to Bad Newz Kennels injure or kill the other dogs,” the report by the USDA’s inspector general-investigations division says.

Vick is serving a 23-month sentence in a minimum-security federal prison camp in Leavenworth, Kan., on a conspiracy charge relating to the interstate dogfighting operation he helped run on a property he owned in Surry County, Va. He is scheduled to be released on July 20, 2009.

He still faces two state charges — one count of torturing and killing dogs and one count of promoting dogfighting. Each carries a five-year maximum prison term. He is expected to plead guilty to those at a hearing Tuesday in Surry County Circuit Court and, under the terms of his plea agreement, and will receive a three-year suspended prison term and a $2,500 fine (which would be suspended if he pays court costs and maintains good behavior for four years).

By resolving the pending state charges, Vick would qualify to be moved to a halfway house to serve out the remainder of his sentence. Read more »