A man in northwest Georgia was detained at his residence after being accused of raising more than 100 pit bulls for dog fighting and breeding them.
Following a lengthy investigation into a “massive dog fighting operation,” Paulding County sheriff’s detectives on November 8 made the 55-year-old Vincent Lemark Burrell their target at his home about 30 miles from Atlanta.
Detectives discovered unvaccinated pit bulls tied to trees or metal stumps at the house using large and extremely heavy logging chains and thick collars. Some of the pit bulls were emaciated, while others were very strong and aggressive toward other dogs.
“Dogs were tied to trees, tied to metal stobs in the ground, and were kept without being properly hydrated and fed,” the sheriff’s office said in a news release. “Many of these dogs were basically left in the elements with little to no shelter for days on end. Furthermore, these dogs were not being seen on a regular basis or vaccinated by a veterinarian.”
Deputies also found some dogs in the basement of Burrell’s house, where authorities had to wear protective equipment just to be able to safely enter the home due to the presence, along with the odor, of urine and feces. The 106 dogs discovered on the property were all taken to shelters.
The sheriff’s office reports that Burrell is currently being held without bond in the Paulding County Jail and that it predicts charging Burrell with more than 100 additional counts as their investigation progresses.
“I am proud of the teamwork that has been exhibited in this case and I am thankful that these dogs are safe now,” said Paulding County Sheriff Gary Gulledge in a statement. “The dark and sinister world of dog fighting is a despicable culture that has no place in our world.”
Anyone with information about the case is urged to contact the detectives at 770-443-3047 or through the Paulding Sheriff mobile app.