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Home  >  Topics  >  Bizarre Beat

May 31, 2006
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Denver police find 36 pit bulls in cages

The Associated Press

DENVER- Neighbors' complaints about dogs bawling and barking brought police to a home where they found 36 pit bulls in cages, some of them with apparent signs of fighting, authorities said.

Dog owner Michael Padilla, 38, was cited for animal cruelty and neglect and for having the banned dogs in Denver. He told police he recently arrived from Texas and was preparing to move to a home in Brighton.

Neighbors had called police complaining about the sounds of dogs fighting, police spokeswoman Virginia Quinones said Monday.

"It was horrible _ it sounded like someone was being attacked or they were fighting," said Rita Poitra, 59, who lives across the street.

One of Padilla's fingertips was bitten off by a dog, police reported, but the owner said his finger got stuck while unstacking dog crates.

"There was a lot of commotion," Padilla said. "Somehow it pinched, and my finger got cut off."

He said the animals were for show, but officers said the animals had scars and dried blood on their coats.

"Anyone that is familiar with show dogs would know that these dogs were in no condition to be in the show ring," Quinones said.

Doug Kelly, director of Denver animal control, said at least some of the pit bulls will be returned if Padilla can verify that the animals are headed to a city where they're allowed.

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