UPDATE 2 - SLIDESHOW: Deputies discover pit bull fighting, prostitution operation in North Highline; one arrested
Update for July 28, 12 p.m.: Four pit bulls were recovered from the scene of a suspected dog fighting ring in the North Highline/White Center area.
One of those pit bulls, described as "injured" and "lethargic" in the KCSO press release has been euthanized by King County Animal Services at the advice of a veterinarian, according to Cameron Satterfield, communications manager for King County Executive Services. A necropsy is being performed on the euthanized animal.
The other three have been impounded by Animal Services and are being held as evidence in the ongoing investigation, Satterfield said.
Press release from the King County Sheriff's Office:
Deputies found evidence of illegal dog fighting, including four pit bulls in unincorporated King County last weekend. One man was arrested in conjunction with the investigation.
The incident began on July 23rd about 3:00 AM. Deputies were called to a complex of duplex apartments in the 10600 block of Aqua Way South. Some of the units are empty and some occupied. A resident in one of the units heard footsteps in a unit that was supposed to be empty and called 9-1-1.
When deputies arrived they saw a man run from the supposedly empty apartment towards the rear of the complex. As deputies searched for the man, they went into a vacant apartment and found large quantities of both fresh and dried blood on the floor and walls. They also found two “bite sticks” typically used to pry open the mouths of fighting dogs to release the bite.
While searching for the man who ran, deputies came across two pit pulls secured to railings in a walkway. One appeared to be injured and was quite lethargic.
Deputies found an occupied apartment near the chained dogs and learned their suspect was in a back bedroom and possibly armed. When he refused to come out, the Sheriff's Office SWAT Team was called. After more negotiation, the man surrendered.
Two additional pitbulls were found in the apartment. All four were turned over to King County Animal Control.
The 26 year-old suspect was booked into the King County Jail on a felony arrest warrant for Escape from Community Custody. He is a convicted felon, including convictions for promoting prostitution, robbery, and felon in possession of a handgun. At this time he is still in jail.
Detectives believe the apartment unit was used for illegal dog fighting, and based on evidence recovered, prostitution activity as well.
The investigation of this incident is continuing, and charges are likely.