Derek McNair of Lauderdale Manors, Florida was arrested Wednesday after he was allegedly found at a home with dogs that were being used as bait in dog fights, news sources report. McNair, 22, was booked into the Broward County Main Jail on charges of the sale, possession or use of an animal for fighting or baiting another animal. Sources say he bonded out of jail on an unspecified amount. The press did not say whether McNair obtained a defense attorney.
According to reports, police received a call reporting animal abuse at 1313 Northwest 11th Street. The property belongs to JFS Ministry LLC, according to reports; however, no spokesperson for the ministry has commented on the allegations. Police found the dogs out back of the home. The female American Staffordshire Terrier-Labrador mix dogs are suspected to have been used as bait in dog fights, as well as for a damaging amount of breeding, sources say.
In the dog-fighting world, bait dogs is a term used for practice dogs. These bait dogs typically have their snouts tied shut and then are thrown into a ring with a fighter dog; this supposedly helps evaluate the fighter dog’s skill. Unfortunately, not being able to defend itself, bait dogs are sometimes mauled and mortally wounded A police spokesperson reportedly said, “A lot of [the dogs] are malnourished, they have scarring, and you can tell some of the females were used heavily for breeding. They really need rehabilitation.”
Police seized the dogs from the home and veterinarians went to work, tending the animals’ wounds. According to reports, No Kill Nation and the Miami Coalition Against Breed Specific Legislation are paying for the dog’s medical bills and training. Despite the dogs’ alleged history of abuse, they all seemed docile with vets, sources indicate. “We were surprised. They were really great dogs [with] nice personalities,” a spokesperson reportedly said. “Nobody’s snarling or trying to bite, they just seem actually happy to be out of the situation they were in.”
A vet said that the case looked good, but that the upmost caution would be used before placing the dogs in homes: “All of [the dogs] seem sweet, but we want to see how they get along with other people, other animals,” she reportedly told the press.
Sadly, animal abuse continues to be a problem in South Florida and much of the U.S. Late last year, Michael Haimes of Coral Springs was arrested after he allegedly performed a sexual act on a dog and killed it afterwards, sources report. Haimes, 29, was taken to the Broward County Main Jail on charges of bringing about the cruel death and pain of an animal and sexual conduct with an animal. His bail was initially set at $100,000.
Reports say the incident occurred at Haimes’ home in the 5300 block of East Leitner Driver. Police responded to the residence discovered the remains of a dog in the woods near the home. Haimes reportedly told police that he performed a sex act on the dog before killing it, sources say.