Man Gets 3 Years For Running South Suburban Dogfighting Ring

CHICAGO (CBS) — Police called it one of the worst animal abuse cases in Illinois and on Wednesday, after four years, a 33-year-old man was sentenced to 3 years in prison on dozens of charges of animal abuse.

CBS 2’s Pamela Jones reports some of the dogs Kevin Taylor was convicted of training to kill have become loving pets for some local families.

Whether she’s playing with a favorite toy, or kissing her piggy pal, Chula’s owner said her happiness lounging at a pet resort in Chicago Ridge is a total switch from the abuse she’s endured.

In 2007, police confiscated Chula and 36 other dogs from a South Holland house where officers said they were trained to fight to the death.

Chula’s new owner said when she first saw pictures of the dog’s injuries, “I cried. I cried; just the look in her eyes. She was frightened and thin and she had sores all over her.”

On Wednesday, Taylor was sentenced to 3 years in prison on 62 charges of dog fighting and animal cruelty.

Taylor’s loved ones refused to comment, but his attorney maintained he did not mistreat the dogs.

“These were older dogs, they had old injuries,” Taylor’s attorney said. “There was sufficient food to feed these dogs and that was one of the points of contention as to whether or not the dogs had been malnourished and they were not.”

But animal rescuers who attended each day of the trial said pairing that view with the scars they’ve seen on the dogs is hard to stomach.

Cynthia Bathurst, with Best Friends Animal Society said it “makes me sick, physically sick, and there’s no way that any of us should not follow these cases and should not demand the fullest prosecution.”

Linda Bober tracked the investigation and fostered several of the animals, adopting two of the dogs – Konerko and A.J.

“I had never seen such atrocities to animals in my life,” she said. “And my thoughts on today, I wish he would have got more time, but it does send a message and hopefully it will stop somebody else from doing the same thing.”

Another of the dogs, named Dora, is getting a new family now. She’s had her own room at the Pawsitively Heaven Pet Resort in Chicago Ridge, complete with a sofa and TV. Those are comforts the family hopes help her forget her painful past.

“She’s really sweet and she’s caring and she’s had a rough life,” Ashley Weg said. “So it would be nice to be able to give her something that she’s never had.”

Not all of the dogs were so lucky. Five of them had to be euthanized. Even the two living at the pet resort have serious issues. At least one has cancer.

  • Jim Hamilton

    They should have just threw him to the dogs he trained

  • Jim Hamilton

    And into the CESSPOOL

    • The Real Jim Hamilton

      Gabe I know it’s you who made this And into the CESSPOOL post. You’re right though I should have thought of that one.

  • Cynthia Bathurst

    We have Sheriff Dart’a Animal Crimes Team — Draus and Brown — to thank for the good police work and commitment. This case marked the beginning of that team and 4.5 years of consistent good arrests and hundreds — actually, thousands — of saved lives. And we have to thank the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office and ASA Volkman’s prosecution and the objective AND outraged Judge Flaherty that brought this to conclusion; the dedicated Court Advocates, Safe Humane Chicago volunteers and the essential support of Best Friends Animal Society that keeps us focused on safe, humane communities; no more homeless pets; and of course the many rescues and homes that have provided the dogs, the victims, who no longer are! Thanks, Pam Jones, for such a good story!

  • tom sharp

    That light sentence means this thing will be abusing animals again in about 18 months.

  • Ron

    The sentence is too light. The criminal is ankle high to a snake in character.

  • LOTD

    Simply place a bullet between his eyes and save us taxpayers the burden of housing him!!!! These BS sentences for animal abuse are almost as disgusting as the crime itself!!!

  • Alexander

    Did anyone do a background check on the new adoptive family? Cause I’d hate to see that poor dog fall into the wrong hands, she deserves nothing but the best!

    • Ashley

      I am adopting Dora and i have been working with her for the last 3 years she had alot of issues as a result to the abuse she endured and it took alot of time to work threw but i have been with her every step of the way. I can assure you she is going into a good home i have 2 other dogs and a 5 yr old son that Dora is very familiar with and although Dora does have mass cell cancer we are looking forward to giving her only the best for the rest of her life


    The true animals of this world are the two-legged, black skinned ones. I’d pay good money to watch them fight to the death.

  • Illinois Business Health Insurance: What Else You Want To Know About Business Health Insurance In Illinois? | Illinois Business Resources

    […] years, a 33-year-old man was sentenced to 3 years in prison on dozens of charges of animal abuse.Read More… Tax breaks for big Illinois companies could trigger demand for more economic […]

blog comments powered by Disqus
Daily Weather Reports Delivered To You!SIGN UP NOW: Get daily weather reports every morning from meteorologist Steve Baskerville!
CBS Sports Radio RoundupGet your latest sports talk from across the country.

Listen Live