This was a difficult case because the judge had to determine would be a danger to children, adults and animals in his community. Defense attorney Yohance Kefense McCoy had asked for a rehearing following the sentence on the grounds that a judge’s determination beyond the facts couldn’t show that Reed would present a future threat.
Reed was given five consecutive sentences on five counts of five years in prison each. Given his age, this will likely be a life sentence for Reed.
Assistant State Attorney Courtney Lenhart told the court that Reed had filed continuous motions to get his dogs back in the past while on probation, and that evidence showed he was a professional dogfighter.
Judge Durrance said he had enough evidence presented in the case to prove Reed kept his dogs confined in small areas in a residential neighborhood, and the dogs were injured and in horrible conditions.
A statement was issued by the ASPCA following Judge Durrance’s ruling
“While the ASPCA was not involved in this particular case, we commend Circuit Judge J. Dale Durrance’s ruling. Dog fighting is an extremely violent crime committed by those who enjoy and profit from the torture of animals. Dog fighters are responsible for the suffering and death of dogs who are forced to fight in a pit and many are involved with other forms of organized crime. The ASPCA advocates for stiffer penalties for dog fighters, which are often insufficient to address the extraordinary cruelty inherent in this crime.”
Perhaps if more judges would hand down harsher sentences, it would put a dent in the number of dogfighters in the United States. The problem has grown worse over the past several years, and this 55 year combined sentence is a major victory for those who crusade to end the cruel “sport.”
Kudos, Judge Durrance. May other judges follow your wisdom and keep these monsters behind bars where they belong.
For information on how to anonymously report dog fighting, click here.