DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Dallas animal advocates say the city is turning a blind eye to dog fighting – putting dozens of dogs and communities in danger.
The state director of Animal Wellness Action said when her organization brought pictures and videos to authorities allegedly showing pit bulls in possession of a man with a court order not have any contact with animals, the director said Dallas Police and the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office did nothing about it.
“Why you would allow someone to take a pass on continuing to own animals after they’ve been involved in crimes using animals. It makes no sense,” said Stephanie Kunkle-Timko, the state director for Animal Wellness Action.
In December, Paul Allen Lacy pleaded guilty to possession of dog fighting paraphernalia.
When the CBS 11 I-Team tried to talk to Lacy, he said, “My case is over, get the (obscenity) away!”
According to Lacy’s arrest warrant, during a narcotics investigation in 2017, detectives discovered 18 pit bull-type dogs tethered on heavy tow chains at his South Dallas house.
Several of the dogs had severe scarring. Investigators also found dog fighting paraphernalia, including a treadmill and steroids, according to the arrest warrant affidavit.
When investigators seized the dogs, according to investigators, Lacy denied ownership of most of the dogs and told them “he does not fight dogs anymore”.
After several delays in his case, this month Lacy was sentenced to 12 months probation.
Between his probation terms and conditions of bond, Lacy has been under a court order to not have any contact with animals since February.
However, Kunkle-Timko said his court orders have not stopped Lacy from housing and allegedly moving dogs between several of his properties.
Since September, Kunkle-Timko said animal advocates have spotted ten different dogs on multiple occasions allegedly being moved back and forth between properties that are either owned by Lacy or owned by GRPD Investments LLC, which Lacy set up after his arrest.
Her advocates documented their findings with pictures and videos.
On a separate occasion, the I-Team also spotted three dogs at Lacy’s home in Lancaster while he was under court order to not have any contact with animals.
The Dallas County District Attorney’s Office told the I-Team detectives did follow up, but concluded there was not sufficient evidence to tie the dogs in question to Lacy.
Multiple messages left by the I-Team to Lacy’s attorney have not been returned.
Along with pleading guilty to possession of dog fighting paraphernalia, Lacy also pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine with intent to deliver as part of the same initial 2017 arrest.
For his drug charge, a judge gave Lacy a four year deferred sentence – meaning he will not have to serve any jail time as long as he does not violate his terms of his community supervision.