High-ranking Pentagon official Frederick Douglass Moorefield Jr., along with his associate, Mario Damon Flythe, have been charged with facilitating an underground dogfighting ring.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland detailed in an October 2 news release that Moorefield, 62, and Flythe, 49, both from Maryland, have been charged with facilitating the gruesome dogfighting activity. On September 6, FBI agents conducted a search at Moorefield’s residence, leading to the discovery of five caged pit bull-type dogs, weighted collars, chains, and other incriminating evidence.
The FBI agents also uncovered equipment suspected of being used in the termination of dogs following lost fights. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland’s press release states, “Law enforcement officers seized a device consisting of an electrical plug and jumper cables, which the affidavit alleges is consistent with devices used to execute dogs that lose dogfights.”
Lt. Cmdr. Tim Gorman, a Pentagon spokesman, acknowledged the charges Tuesday, stating, “We can confirm that the individual is no longer in the workplace,” while refraining from commenting further and directing all questions to the Justice Department.
In addition to the investigation of Moorefield’s residence, FBI agents also conducted a search at Flythe’s home on September 6, which resulted in the discovery of seven more pit-bull-type dogs, metal cages, weighted collars, and other evidence.
Wayne Pacelle, president of the Washington, D.C.-based Animal Wellness Action, addressed the allegations Tuesday, stating, “As ugly and horrific as it is, dogfighting can be found just beneath the surface of civil society with the perpetrators maintaining the veneer of mainstream participation in society.”
Pacelle gave credit to federal authorities for successfully putting an end to Moorefield and Flythe’s dogfighting operations and for making efforts to prevent other dogfighting operations.
“The scale of the problem is staggering, and we must respond with even more vigorous efforts to pull up animal fighting at the root,” he said. “No dog should endure the kind of pain and torment that fighting animals endure in the pit and after their handlers decide they are no longer useful to them.”
READ MORE: Pics: Two hero dogs recognized for supporting US troops
According to Military.com, the FBI’s investigation also referenced an unsettling incident from November 2018, where two injured dogs were found discarded in a dog food bag near Annapolis. The bag contained mail linked to Moorefield, leading FBI Special Agent Ryan C. Daly to infer Moorefield’s potential involvement in discarding dogs after fights.
Additionally, the charges accuse Moorefield and Flythe of holding digital conversations about dogfights over encrypted platforms and using aliases in the dogfighting community, with Moorefield as “Geehad Kennels” and Flythe as “Razor Sharp Kennels.”
Moorefield and Flythe are also accused of having connections with other individuals who have been prosecuted in previous dogfighting cases. If proven guilty, both Moorefield and Flythe could face imprisonment of up to five years.
This news article was partially created with the assistance of artificial intelligence and edited and fact-checked by a human editor.