Pentagon Official Charged With Running a Dogfighting Ring
Twelve dogs were rescued from this barbaric operation that has been going on for two decades.
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The Department of Defense filed a criminal complaint charging a Pentagon official with dogfighting, according to records that the Department of Justice unsealed Monday night. Per a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Maryland, Frederick Douglass Moorefield Jr., a deputy chief information officer for command, control and communications, was allegedly operating a dogfighting ring under the name “Geehad Kennels.”
He, along with another defendant, Mario Damon Flythe, a barber who is said to have used the name “Razor Sharp Kennels,” were reportedly using an encrypted messaging app to talk about dogs who had died from dogfighting, how to train dogs for the abhorrent practice, and to coordinate and bet on dogfights.
Per the affidavit prepared by FBI Special Agent Ryan C. Daly, Moorefield had been involved in dogfighting for about two decades, The New York Times reports. The Times reported that, per court records, Anne Arundel County Animal Control “responded in November 2018 to a report of two dead dogs found with wounds and scarring patterns consistent with dogfighting in a plastic bag about six miles from Mr. Moorefield’s house.” The plastic bag also reportedly contained mail addressed to Moorefield.
The press release also states that police also “recovered veterinary steroids, training schedules, a carpet that appeared to be stained with blood, and a weighted dog vest with a patch reading ‘Geehad Kennels.’ In addition, law enforcement officers seized a device consisting of an electrical plug and jumper cables, which the affidavit alleges is consistent with devices used to execute dogs that lose dogfights.”
The Times reported that law enforcement also recovered 12 dogs after searching the defendants’ homes on September 6.
As The Wildest has reported, dogfighting is illegal in all 50 states, thanks to the Animal Welfare Act. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean it’s not still a huge problem: The Humane Society of the U.S. (HSUS) estimates that “more than 40,000 people participate in organized dogfighting in the U.S.,” and The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) states that “[dogfighting[ continues to occur in every part of the country and in every type of community.”
Per the press release, if convicted, Moorefield and Flythe could face up to a maximum of five years “for possessing, training, or transporting animals for participation in an animal fighting venture.”
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Hilary Weaver is the senior editor at The Wildest. She has previously been an editor at The Spruce Pets, ELLE, and The Cut. She was a staff writer at Vanity Fair from 2016 to 2019, and her work has been featured in Esquire, Refinery 29, BuzzFeed, Parade, and more. She lives with her herding pups, Georgie and Charlie.