Anthony Reddick, 54, was barred from owning animals for 15 years due to prior court order
MINEOLA, N.Y. – Acting Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas announced that a Freeport man was arraigned today on an indictment charging him with crimes related to dogfighting.
Anthony Reddick, 54, was arraigned in front of Acting Supreme Court Justice Terrence Murphy on the following charges: • Four counts of Prohibition of Animal Fighting (an unclassified felony)• Prohibition of Animal Fighting (a misdemeanor)• Conspiracy in the 5th Degree (an A misdemeanor)• Criminal Contempt in the 2nd Degree (an A misdemeanor)
Judge Murphy set bail at $50,000 bond or $25,000 cash.If convicted on the top charge, Reddick faces up to four years in prison. He is due back in court October 19.A second defendant, who is charged on the same indictment as Reddick, is expected to be arraigned on those charges on Thursday, October 8.
“New York State law is an embarrassment when it comes to penalties for dogfighting,” Acting DA Singas said. “My office has been working diligently for years to fix our state’s laws, because they certainly don’t go far enough to protect animals or give prosecutors the tools they need to deal with repeat offenders.”
Acting DA Singas said that between March 29 and May 13, Reddick, also known as Tone, and a codefendant allegedly conspired to breed, purchase, train and fight pit bull dogs. The defendants also discussed techniques to use for upcoming fights. In one conversation, Reddick and his codefendant discussed breeding a dog named “Diva”, and Reddick allegedly said, “Let’s breed together. Let’s make it happen.”
Reddick made plans with his codefendant to build between four and five kennels, which were to be built at the codefendant’s sister’s house.
In another conversation, Reddick said that he knew he was not supposed to be around dogs for 15 years because of prior court order. Reddick also brokered a dogfight and the dog, named Beattie, died in a fight on May 7.
The defendant was arrested by the Nassau County Police Department on May 13 after a joint investigation with the DA’s office.
The Nassau County District Attorney’s Office has sought to change antiquated laws related to animal crimes that are currently classified in the state’s Agriculture and Markets Law. The Consolidated Animal Crimes Bill (CACB) was authored by District Attorney Kathleen Rice’s administration and introduced in 2012 in an effort to protect animals and prosecute animal abuse cases. The office, now under the leadership of Acting District Attorney Singas, has continued to fight for the passage of the bill in Albany.
The Consolidated Animal Crimes Bill would greatly assist in the arrest, prosecution and sentencing of animal abusers by:
- Making the law more accessible to arresting officers. Currently, police officers are required to be trained on the state’s Penal Law, but not its Agriculture & Markets Law. Officers also typically have ready access to Penal Law handbooks, but not A&M Law. The Consolidated Animal Crimes Bill ensures that arresting officers have a more thorough grasp of the state’s animal crimes law when responding to a call or a crime scene and needing to decide whether or not to make arrests.
- Streamlining the language of the law so that it’s more clear and easy to understand.
- Aligning the practice of fingerprinting and DNA collection in order to assist in investigations and prosecutions. In the current A&M Law, animal crimes misdemeanors are generally not subject to fingerprinting or DNA collection, which is automatic under the Penal Law. Moving animal crimes to the Penal Law would align them with other crimes.
- Strengthening penalties against animal abusers. Current maximum sentences for felony animal cruelty or felony dogfighting (both unclassified felonies) are 2 and 4 years in prison, respectively, with no increase in sentence for repeat offenders. Under the Consolidated Animal Crimes Bill, those crimes become D felonies, which feature a maximum sentence of 7 years in prison, and repeat offenders can be exposed to increased prison time due to prior convictions.
Assistant District Attorney Christiana McSloy of Acting DA Singas’ Street Narcotics and Gang Bureau is prosecuting the case. Reddick is represented by Steven Barnwell, Esq.
The charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless found guilty.