SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. — Two people were arrested and eight pit bull terriers were seized Monday in a 3-month dogfighting investigation in Sumter County.
Deputies from Sumter and Pasco counties and the FBI executed a search warrant at a home in the 5000 block of W C-48 in Bushnell,where they said they discovered that Patrick Riley was breeding, prepping and training dogs to fight.
“Apparently he was selling drugs and he was also training dogs,” said James Haworth of the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office. “He’s a nationwide dogfighter and trains dogs to be distributed all over the country.”
The investigation began with an anonymous tip, deputies said.
Officials say the dogs that were seized, were being trained and have not yet fought. Deputies hope they can saved and eventually adopted out pic.twitter.com/aW9QDojXsK— Myrt Price (@MPriceWFTV) March 2, 2017
Crystal meth, nearly 3 pounds of marijuana, drug paraphernalia, numerous pills, antibiotics and Ecstasy were found in the home, authorities said.
Deputies also said they found several firearms, including shotguns, rifles and handguns.
They said Riley admitted to hosting at least one dogfight at his home, but deputies said the evidence suggests that he has been involved with dogfighting since 1975.
“It’s very under the radar. They protect their crime to the utmost and here in Sumter County, Mr. Riley bred them more than he fought them,” said Haworth.
Officials say when they showed up to his home with a search warrant. They found 8 dogs, drugs, guns, training equipment and cash. #WFTV pic.twitter.com/ZaROanCbTQ— Myrt Price (@MPriceWFTV) March 2, 2017
Deputies said they found equipment and documentation detailing involvement, attendance and hosting of dogfighting events.
Sumter County Animal Control took custody of eight pit bull terriers.
Riley is facing a long list charges, including selling, possessing and using animals to fight or bait.
Deputies also arrested Tosha McClenaghan, who was at the home, on charges of drug possession.
Riley is being held in jail on a $60,000 bond.
Officials say suspect Patrick Wayne Riley, is a big deal in dog fighting circles. He's a nationally known dog fighting trainer and breeder. pic.twitter.com/1tvBa81rFn— Myrt Price (@MPriceWFTV) March 2, 2017
Deputies arrested Patrick Riley and Tosha Marie McClenaghan; right now the two are facing numerous charges. #WFTV pic.twitter.com/q7nfAmgoPg— Myrt Price (@MPriceWFTV) March 2, 2017
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