Officer John Satterfield loads a pit bull into an Animal Control truck. (Ken Caruthers / Rome News-Tribune)

Six American pit bulls were picked up by the Floyd County Animal Control department from a dilapidated, fenced-in property on Jones Road today, with two reported to be in very poor condition, according to Animal Control officials.

Police and Animal Control officers said evidence suggests the dogs had been in fights. They said their wounds were consistent with dogfighting injuries, and some dogs even had what appeared to be fairly fresh blood on them.

The injuries on the dogs included serious eye damage, possibly a broken leg, and multiple cuts and scrapes.

The dogs had apparently been kept on logging chains staked to the ground and had blue drum trash cans for sleeping quarters.

“We’re trying to determine who the owner of the dogs is, and we think we have two suspects,” said Jason Broome, director of Floyd County Animal Control. “The dogs will be kept at the shelter until a disposition is made on the case.”

Chuck Simmons, a pro-bono investigator for the Humane Society, first responded to a tip about the dogs and their condition. When he arrived to investigate the situation, he said one of the dogs looked like it was close to death and immediately called Animal Control.

Animal Control then contacted the Floyd County Police Department, and Sgt. Dan Bickers arrived at the scene to interview the property owner.

“This is an open investigation right now,” Bickers said. “This could result in six felony counts of cruelty to animals. There was old scarring and new, so it’s obvious to me that some sort of dogfighting was going on.

“Now, we’re trying to locate possible suspects for questioning and trying to build our case.”

Animal Control officials were not sure if the dogfighting was occurring on that property, or if the dogs were being transported to another location for fighting.

Broome said his department had dealt with dogs before at that location, and court citations had been issued in the past.

Article Courtsey of Rome News Tribune