Five pit bulls were removed from a home near York and three people have been charged after sheriff’s deputies discovered a dog fight in progress Wednesday afternoon.
The dog fight was discovered when a deputy was called to a home on Lincoln Forest Drive just north of the city at about 12:45 p.m. to check on an abandoned car in the road, said Trent Faris, spokesman for the York County Sheriff’s Office. The deputy heard “something unusual” behind the home, Faris said, and discovered what appears to have been a dog fight.
Deputies and York County Animal Control officers spent several hours investigating the scene. Faris said it’s unclear whether dog fighting has been an ongoing problem at the home.
The sheriff's office on Thursday morning said that James Willie Rhodes, 27, and Johnny Fred Moore, 55, are the suspects accused of dog fighting. A third suspect, Charlina Mae McKinney, 23, is charged with giving false information to police.
One person suspected of being involved in the dog fight ran from deputies and was still at large Wednesday night. Deputies tried to track that person with police dogs, but witnesses told them the person eventually fled by car after running through nearby woods. Faris said the sheriff’s office does not consider the at-large suspect to be a threat to local residents.
The dogs will be under the care of Animal Control and veterinarians, Faris said. Early indications from the investigation revealed that two of the dogs had injuries “consistent with dog fighting,” he said. One of those dogs appeared to veterinarians to have been badly injured.
As of Thursday morning, all the dogs were "resting comfortably," Faris said.