On Thursday October 23rd a man (Hewitt Grant, 47) and a woman (Nickie Nicole Sanders, 44) were charged with animal cruelty in connection with operating a dog fighting ring at two different locations. There were 61 dogs rescued in total.
Polk county sheriffs executed search warrants for the two residences on Wednesday the 22nd of October. There were 20 dogs found at 122 Martin Luther King Jr. St. in Fort Meade. 7 Dogs were forced to wear heavy chains to strengthen them for fights. A portable dog-fighting ring was used here, but it was moved. It was later found at the second location.
Another 41 dogs were found at 880 LB Browne Ave. in Bartow. The portable dog-fighting ring was also found here with a treadmill for training the dogs. There were also 4 dogs found in heavy chains while 37 others were in kennels. Most of the dogs were Pitbulls and many had untreated injuries to their faces and bodies. Blood stains were found over the walls.
Hewitt Grant is now facing 78 charges involving animal cruelty or animal fighting. He is also facing a possession charge and two counts of felon in possession of a firearm charges. Nickie Nicole Sanders is facing 48 charges of the same types, a possession charge and possession of drug paraphernalia.
This isn’t the first time Hewitt Grant has been involved in animal cruelty. In 2006 he was convicted of dog fighting and 138 dogs were seized from him and an injunction prevented him from ever owning a dog again. However here we are, with another 61 dogs in the same conditions.
There is currently no federal law in place regarding animal cruelty; we discussed this in an earlier article. The question remains though, where will these dogs go now and what should the punishment be?
Let us know what you believe the punishment should be. If you have a second chance dog, share your story! We want to hear.