More than 100 dogs seized in NJ dogfighting raid; 8 arrested including alleged organizer 'Hollywood'

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Saturday, April 6, 2024
More than 100 dogs seized in NJ dogfighting raid; 7 arrested
More than 100 dogs seized in NJ dogfighting raid; 7 arrested including alleged organizer 'Hollywood'

MAURICE RIVER TWP., New Jersey (WPVI) -- Authorities spent several days searching a Maurice River Township property in connection with an alleged large-scale dogfighting operation.

A total of eight people have been arrested after investigators executed search warrants this week at two properties in Cumberland County and a home in Atlantic County.

Bruce Low Jr.

Court records say 103 fighting dogs, fighting equipment, and other documentation were recovered from one property Wednesday in Maurice River Township. Action News was there and exclusively captured the raid.

Authorities say two dogs were found dead in a pit.

Bruce Low Jr., the alleged leader who is known as "Hollywood," is facing a slew of charges, including dogfighting, money laundering, racketeering and other charges.

Several of Low's family members were charged, including his son, Bryce, 20, and mother, Terri, 67.

FULL NEWS CONFERENCE: NJ AG Matthew Platkin speaks about 8 arrests in dogfighting raid

"Profiting from dogfighting is callous, brutal, and cruel," said Attorney General Matthew Platkin. "These animals are born into lives of abuse, suffering, and violence, culminating with hours-long fights and frequently these dogs' slow and painful deaths. The alleged illegal activities that were uncovered by this investigation will not go unpunished."

Law enforcement began investigating after getting tips beginning in late 2021.

Low Jr. is accused of being one of the top five dogfighting breeders in the country. He allegedly ran his operation through Royal Bull Kennels on the South Jersey property.

Investigators say the website used terms like "game dogs" and "conditioned weight," which are dogfighting terms.

Charging documents also say his dogs were highly sought after in the dogfighting world.

Low Jr. allegedly told an undercover officer he did 61 "concerts " last year, which is code for dog fights. Authorities also say he made money by selling dogs on stud fees and gambling.

The money was allegedly laundered through a legitimate construction company, Kisdir Group, which is also based on the Maurice River Township property.

William McClinton, 68, Coy Dickenson, 58, Travis Garron, 38, Mark A. Runkle, 42, and Roosevelt Hart, 29, are also charged in the case.

"Dismantling a dog fighting ring is not just about rescuing animals; it's about dismantling a culture of cruelty and restoring compassion to our communities," said Colonel Patrick J. Callahan, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police. "It represents a steadfast commitment against violence, showcasing the impact of justice and empathy."

IMAGE: Six others arrested in dogfighting raid (from top left to bottom right) -- Terri Low, Roosevelt Hart III, William McClinton, Coy Dickenson, Bryce Low, and Travis Garron

It's not the first run-in with law enforcement for Low Jr.

In 2006, he pleaded guilty to drug and gun charges after investigators found large quantities of cocaine, morphine pills, guns, ammunition and cash on the Maurice River Township property.

Authorities reportedly found a secret bunker during that search.

Low Jr. was sentenced to more than 12 years in federal prison and five years of supervised release.

The New Jersey Attorney General's Office is leading this investigation.