Seven charged dog-fighting ring, including three local men

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(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

DUBLIN, Ga (WJBF) – Seven men have been indicted on federal charges involving a dog-fighting operation broken up in 2018 in Dodge County, Ga.

The 67-count indictment targets the owner of a site used for dog fighting and individuals alleged to have participated in fights at the facility.

The lead defendant in the case, James Lampkin, a/k/a “Pookie,” 45, of Eastman, Ga., is charged with Conspiracy to Violate the Animal Welfare Act; and 63 counts of Possessing and Training a Dog for Purposes of an Animal Fighting Venture, related to the 63 dogs seized on his property where the dog fights were alleged to have taken place.

  • Benjamin Shinhoster III, 40, of Augusta, charged with Conspiracy to Violate the Animal Welfare Act; Transporting and Delivering a Dog for Purposes of an Animal Fighting Venture; Sponsoring and Exhibiting a Dog in an Animal Fighting Venture; and Attending an Animal Fighting Venture;
  • Deveon Hood, 33, of Tennille, Ga., charged with Conspiracy to Violate the Animal Welfare Act; and Attending an Animal Fighting Venture;
  • Xavier Simmons, 34, of Sandersville, Ga., charged with Conspiracy to Violate the Animal Welfare Act; and Attending an Animal Fighting Venture;
  • Andre Archer, 23, of Sandersville, Ga., charged with Conspiracy to Violate the Animal Welfare Act; and Attending an Animal Fighting Venture;
  • Joe Ford, 32, of Elgin, S.C., charged with Conspiracy to Violate the Animal Welfare Act, and Attending an Animal Fighting Venture; and,
  • Dwight McDuffie, 44, of Eastman, Ga., charged with Attending an Animal Fighting Venture.

The animals were seized and the defendants identified on March 17, 2018, when Georgia State Patrol troopers and Georgia Department of Natural Resources game wardens responding to reports of a dog fight being held in the area performed traffic stops in Eastman, discovering a dog in one of the vehicles that appeared to have been injured while fighting.

The 63 dogs were later seized at Lampkin’s residence after investigators serving a search warrant found the animals chained in the back yard.

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