ALEXANDRIA, Va. (WRIC) — A Maryland man has pleaded guilty to a dogfighting conspiracy in Virginia.
According to a release from the Department of Justice (DOJ), Laron Mecco “Frog” West, 46, and other conspirators from Virginia, Washington D.C. and Maryland conspired to engage in dog fighting.
The group used a messaging app private group — which they referred to as, “The DMV Board,” or, “The Board” — from at least May 2015 to August 2020.
According to the DOJ, the group used the messaging app to discuss how to train fighting dogs, share videos about dog fighting, coordinate dog fights and compare methods for killing dogs that lost fights.
On June 20, 2017, West posted on the DMV Board, saying “we kill” fighting dogs that quit, according to court documents. On Oct. 17, 2018, West notified the group that dogs that had failed to fight aggressively enough had been killed.
I love to throw the motherf*****s over the bridge into the water. But, uh, nah, you know, he lived too far. I ain’t want to ride the motherf*****ing mutt with me just to throw it to the bridge. If they was closer, I would’ve went to the bridge and throw me over that mother f***** for sure.An excerpt from court documents detailing West’s communications on Oct. 17, 2018
On March 10, 2018, West drove coconspirator, Charles Edward Williams, III, to a warehouse in Philadelphia where Williams entered his dog into a dogfight attended by dozens of people, according to court documents.
According to the DOJ, West, Williams and five others were indicted for their involvement in the organized dogfighting conspiracy of the “DMV Board.”
West and Williams both pleaded guilty and are scheduled to be sentenced on Feb. 21, 2023. Both men will face a maximum penalty of five years in prison — although actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than maximum penalties.