Authorities working to place dogs found in Polk County
Polk County police and animal control officials were still attempting to find places to put the remaining dogs late Wednesday after raiding two locations and finding 105 dogs in deplorable conditions earlier in the week.
Polk County Police Chief Kenny Dodd said animal rescue groups stepped up to help by placing dogs in rescue organizations in temporary homes — but many of the dogs still need a place to go to free up space in animal control facili- ties currently housing them.
As of Wednesday afternoon, there were still 40 dogs from the Cashtown Road location to be placed. The others were taken in by Barktown Dog Rescue in Jasper, Cedartown Animal Rescue, Helping Paws Rescue in Athens, Homes 4 Ever in Rockmart and Pickens Animal Rescue. Those found at the Puckett Road location have been placed in shelters in Paulding County, Douglas County, Cherokee County, Alabama, and with the HERO Rescue Group in Cumming.
“People also need to understand that we can’t just turn these dogs over to anyone. They have to go to a licensed rescue that has experience with handling these kinds of dogs,” Dodd said. “They need rehabilitation before they can go to a new owner.”
His hopes are that the second group of dogs — which he said exhibited injuries that resemble dogs who have been documented to be used in fights previously — can be kept in the area for evidence.
“We really need to keep them around so that way we can have a veterinarian around to keep an eye on them and document their injuries and healing,” Dodd said.
Police detained a few people for questioning but Dodd said they have one suspect in the case. Police arrested Devecio Ranard Rowland, 32, of a Jones Avenue address, on Monday.
Dodd said those who were initially questioned about their knowledge
of the dogs cooperated with authorities and there are no plans to charge them. Dodd said investigators don’t believe they were officially involved with the dogs kept on the property.
Rowland remained in the Polk County Jail on the 70 misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals, along with an additional probation violation charge.
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Devecio Ranard Rowland