The Department of Justice has announced that a federal jury convicted a Georgia resident on federal charges stemming from violations of the Animal Welfare Act. Eleven co-defendants previously pleaded guilty to federal charges.
Kizzy Solomon, aka Kizzy Andrews, 44, of Camilla, was found guilty on June 22 of 15 counts of aiding and abetting the possession and training of dogs for purposes of an animal fighting venture following a two-day trial that began on June 21 in federal court. Solomon is facing a maximum of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine per count and three years of supervised release.
Each defendant faces a maximum sentence of one to five years in prison and fines of $100,000 to $250,000, or both. Sentencing for certain defendants is scheduled for July 21-22 before U.S. District Judge Leslie Gardner. There is no parole in the federal system.
“The successful conclusion of this case highlights the division’s efforts to combat animal cruelty since we took responsibility for combating this vicious and cruel crime in 2014,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Jean E. Williams of the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division. “We will continue to prosecute significant and major offenders to maximize the impact of these cases on this illegal industry.”
“Dog fighting is an atrocious crime that often serves as a breeding ground for other illegal behavior,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Peter D. Leary for the Middle District of Georgia. “Our office will vigorously prosecute individuals found abusing and using animals for illegal fighting and gambling. I want to thank the law enforcement agencies involved at the local and federal level for helping us obtain justice in this case, sending a message that dog fighting will not be tolerated in the Middle District of Georgia.”
“Individuals who support and facilitate the cold-hearted practice of dog fighting will face the fullest extent of criminal sanctions for their actions,” said Special Agent in Charge Jason Williams of the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Office of Inspector General. “We appreciate the commitment of our law enforcement partners to investigate and assist in the criminal prosecution of those who support the appalling abuse of these animals.”
According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, federal agents executed a search warrant at Solomon’s Camilla property on Sept. 12, 2018, seizing 27 pit bull-type dogs housed on chains, in poor living conditions. All but the puppies had scarring and injuries consistent with use in dog fighting. Agents also seized a large amount of dog fighting equipment in plain view throughout the primary living spaces of the house. Most notably, there was a large dog treadmill on which various dogs’ fighting histories, including whether they had perished during the fights, was written in print.
11 co-defendants previously entered guilty pleas to various offenses related to their participation in an animal fighting venture:
Leslie Meyers aka Les Meyers, 44, of Tallahassee, Florida;
Alonza Jordan, 48, of Americus, Georgia;
Germany Brockington aka Rat and Gator, 34, of Ambrose, Georgia;
Kevin Charles aka Trinidad, 45, of Jackson, Georgia;
Maurice Glover, 48, of Douglas, Georgia;
Orlando Johnson aka OJ and Juiceman, 35, of Americus, Georgia;
Shadon Johnson, 37, of Fitzgerald, Georgia;
Terry Driggers, 71, of Hoboken, Georgia;
Starlin Morgan, 39, of Plains, Georgia;
Kentre Gibson aka Gipp, 40, of Douglas, Georgia; and,
Timothy White, 51, of Patterson, Georgia.
Each defendant faces a maximum sentence of one to five years in prison and fines of $100,000 to $250,000, or both. Sentencing for certain defendants is scheduled for July 21-July 22 before U.S. District Judge Leslie Gardner. There is no parole in the federal system.
The case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Office of Inspector General, the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office and Decatur County Animal Control.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Jim Crane for the Middle District of Georgia and Environment and Natural Resources Division Trial Attorney Ethan Eddy are prosecuting the case.