46. ​​Daytona Beach Cops: Three Men Arrested on Multiple Felony Charges in Dogfighting Ring; 42 pit bulls rescued

Counting Them: For better or worse, here’s Headline Surfer’s countdown of the 100 Greatest Stories of 2021 from Central Florida along the tourist stretch of Interstate 4 (Orlando Attractions and east to ‘at I-95 and the world’s most famous beach in Daytona). Each recap segment is released with its own title, culminating with the unveiling of #1, before moving on to the Top 5 storylines – the good, the bad and the ugly on the horizon in ‘2022: The Year Ahead’. “.

Photos for Headline Surfer/Benjamin Ponder, 33; Earl Holmes, 50; and Nobles Geathers, 53; were arrested on multiple felony charges including animal cruelty and animal fighting in March. More than 40 pit bulls have been rescued from squalid conditions.

Dogfighting ring busted in Daytona in 2021 / Headline SurferBy HENRY FREDERICK / Headline Surfer

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Three men have been arrested on multiple counts, including animal cruelty and animal fighting, after Daytona Beach cops broke up a dogfighting ring earlier this month. March and have saved over 40 pit bulls.

Daytona Beach Police were assisted in the operation by the Volusia County Animal Services Division, the Halifax Humane Society, the City of Daytona Beach Animal Control Unit and the Code Enforcement Division of the city which resulted in the felony arrests of Noble Geathers, 53, Earl Holmes, 50, and Benjamin Ponder, 33.

All of these charges came after DBPD obtained search warrants from a Volusia County judge to enter properties at 225 and 227 Reva Streets as well as adjacent vacant land in the early morning hours of February 22, 2021. A fence that had been illegally put inside the vacant lot was torn down, allowing officers access to the dogs.

Investigators found 42 pit bulls – 24 adults and 18 puppies – living at these properties, most of them kept outside in small wooden and wire kennels, car carriers or chained up to car axles with little or no access to clean water or food. Many females were raising new pups to fight.

“Some of these dogs did not have access to shelter and many of those lived in areas covered in urine and feces,” Daytona Beach Police PIO Messod Bendayan told Headline Surfer in a media alert via e-mail. “Many of the dogs were wearing collars that had to be cut due to their tight fit. A good number of dogs were found with cuts or healing wounds on their bodies which is consistent with dogfighting.”

42 pit bulls rescued by Daytona cops from dogfighting ring / Headline Surfer“Some of these dogs did not have access to shelter and many of those lived in areas covered in urine and feces,” Daytona Beach Police PIO Messod Bendayan told Headline Surfer in a media alert via e-mail. “Many of the dogs were wearing collars that had to be cut due to their tight fit. A good number of dogs were found with cuts or healing wounds on their bodies which is consistent with dogfighting.”

Daytona Beach cops also found medical records for the dogs that were kept by the defendants along with various types of dog supplements and medications, including a type of drug commonly used in organized dog fights to boost production. of red blood cells as well as stamina and stamina.

All puppies (seven females, 11 males) and adult pit bulls (20 females, four males) were removed from the premises and taken to the Halifax Humane Society for safekeeping, pending court hearings to confiscate permanently the dogs so that they can be cared for while waiting for possible adoptions in good families.

Geathers – who detectives say was the ringleader – faces 35 counts, including 24 counts of animal fighting, 10 counts of criminal animal cruelty and one count of practicing veterinary medicine without license. He was booked into the Volusia County Jail on March 9, 2021, and has since posted bond.

Ponder was facing the same charges as Geathers plus one count of possession of cannabis with intent to sell, possession of cocaine with intent to sell and driving with a suspended/cancelled/revoked license. He was booked into the Volusia County Jail on March 6, 2021 and has since posted bond.

Holmes was charged with 10 counts of practicing veterinary medicine without a license and 10 counts of criminal cruelty to animals. He was booked into the Volusia County Jail on March 3, 2021 and has remained there ever since on unrelated felony charges.

Biography of Henry Frederick / Headline Surfer

About the author of the signature: Henry Frederick is a working press member and publisher of Headline Surfer, the award-winning 24/7 Internet media outlet launched in 2008, serving the greater Daytona Beach, Sanford and Orlando area from Lake Mary, Florida via HeadlineSurfer.com. Frederick has amassed nearly 150 award-winning signatures in print and online. He earned his Master of Arts in New Media Journalism from Full Sail University in 2019. He was a breaking news reporter (subway cops and courts) for the Daytona Beach News-Journal for nearly a decade. And before that, the same beat worked for The Journal-News/Gannett Suburban Newspapers in Rockland/Westchester Counties, NY, dating back to 1989. Having witnessed the execution of serial killer Aileen Wuornos in the bedroom of the death from Florida and covering other high-profile cases, Frederick appeared on national crime documentary shows on Discovery ID, Reelz and the Oxygen Network series “Snapped” for his analysis. • Award-Winning Journalism: The Florida Press Club recognizes Headline Surfer for nine articles in the 2020 statewide contest. • Award-winning journalism by Henry Frederick.

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Jennifer R. Strohm