ASPCA RESPONDS TO QUERIES REGARDING MICHAEL VICK CASE
As part of a drug investigation on April 25, police raided a 15-acre property in Virginia owned by Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick—and discovered 66 dogs, 55 of them pit bulls, and a variety of equipment that could be associated with dog fighting. In response to the ongoing news coverage of the pending investigation and allegations surrounding the football star, the ASPCA has received numerous emails and calls from concerned citizens, many expressing outrage, and many wondering what can be done to stop the cruel blood sport of dog fighting.
Dog fighting is an illegal practice in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The ASPCA strongly opposes animal cruelty in any form, and is especially concerned about any characterization of dog fighting as a trivial matter. Says the ASPCA’s Randall Lockwood, Ph.D., Senior Vice President, Anti-Cruelty Initiatives and Legislative Services, “This is a serious and violent crime that represents the worst possible violation of the special bond between people and dogs, and should be investigated and prosecuted accordingly.”
Virginia’s Surry County Commonwealth Attorney Gerald G. Poindexter said last week that he is confident that charges will be brought in the investigation of a possible dog fighting operation. As we wait for new developments in the case, the ASPCA believes it is necessary for all facts to become known before making any definitive statement. However, the ASPCA is strongly opposed to the practice of dog fighting, and supports strong prosecution of such cases.
We also stand ready to help authorities by providing expertise on animal fighting, cruelty investigations and anti-cruelty issues, and are proud to let animal advocates across the country know that Dr. Melinda Merck, forensic veterinarian with the ASPCA, has been asked by Poindexter to assist in the pending investigation.
Credit: ASPCA Newsletter