RICHLAND COUNTY, SC (WACH) - A man charged in connection with a dog fighting bust in Richland County more than a year ago will spend one year in jail, according to Sheriff Leon Lott.
James Earl Green, 51, pled guilty to one count of dog fighting and one county of animal cruelty on Monday and must report to prison on Feb. 4 by 5 p.m.
The sheriff says Green was charged with three counts of felony animal cruelty and four counts of dog fighting in October 2011 and that the sentencing was a negotiated plea agreement against him.
Green is accused of being involved in a dog fighting ring on Campground Road. Deputies found several dogs chined to the ground along a path with evidence of mistreatment at the location. He is also accused of using box cutters or scissors to cut the ears off of three puppies between 4 and 5 weeks of age.
Lott says Green was arrested in 2011 after investigators went to Campground Road to look into complaints of dogs barking. Green and several other individuals were watching pitbulls fight when deputies arrived.
Fifteen dogs were rescued in the bust and went to groups in South Carolina, New York, Rhode Island and Texas. Ten of the dogs were adopted.
A Major at Ft. Hood in Texas rescued one of the dogs, who he named Buster. Buster goes to work with the Major almost everyday.
Another success story comes from woman who adopted one of the female dogs. Mustang Sally aka Chula is described by the owner's family as an "expert cuddler" who "shows no signs of trauma from her past life."
Stonewall, one of the puppies who had his ears cut off, now comes to work at the Richland County Sheriff's Department firearms lab.
Anyone with information on dog fighting or animal cruelty in the Midlands can contact CrimeStoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC.