Conflicting reports on dog fighting link at MAS - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Conflicting reports on dog fighting link at Memphis Animal Shelter

(WMC-TV) - The City of Memphis said its undercover investigation found no evidence of a dog fighting link at the Memphis Animal Shelter, but a Rotary Club report noted otherwise.

Crime Stoppers executive director Buddy Chapman said he is pleased with Memphis Mayor A C Wharton after an undercover investigation ended with the arrest of three Memphis Animal Shelter employees.

"He served notice," said Chapman.  "He's not going to put up with it and my hat's off to him."

Chapman helped investigate the shelter for a Rotary Club report in November of last year.

"I was the one that actually wrote the summary," said Chapman.

The report claimed animals were being sold out of the back door to dog fighting rings.

Wharton said the undercover officer spent three months inside the shelter and did not uncover any trails to dog fighting.

"Throughout it all, we have not received anything with respect to dog fighting," Wharton said Thursday.

"That doesn't surprise me in the least," said Chapman.

Chapman said he stands by the Rotary Club report, claiming it likely helped quash the dog fighting link by bringing attention to it.

He said the report's findings were not invalidated just because the officer found no supporting evidence.

"Doesn't mean it's not happening right now.  He can't be everywhere," said Chapman.  "Maybe there were areas of the shelter he didn't see.  Maybe he wasn't privy to everything."

Chapman said the arrests, combined with a new director provide hope for the troubled shelter.

"I hope the shelter is on the right track," he said.

The Rotary Club report was based on interviews with employees who were promised anonymity, which is useless for prosecution.

The city said it will act on any credible, willful information.

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