17 August 2007

Cohorts Say Vick's A Dog Killer: remaining codefendants cut plea deals in dogfighting case

From Smoking Gun...


Ratcheting up the pressure on Michael Vick, two of the NFL star's cohorts today pleaded guilty to federal dogfighting charges, leaving the athlete alone--at least for the time being--to face trial.
During an appearance this morning in U.S. District Court in Richmond, Virginia, Quanis Phillips and Purnell Peace each copped to a felony conspiracy rap and signed plea agreements pledging to cooperate with federal investigators. In nearly identical fact summaries, both Phillips and Peace stated that the dogfighting ring's "operation and gambling monies were almost exclusively funded by Vick."

Additionally, both men fingered Vick in the execution earlier this year of about 8 dogs that performed poorly in test fighting sessions.

Phillips and Peace each told investigators that Vick participated in killing the dogs, which were hung or drowned, and that the animals "died as a result of the collective efforts" of the trio.

Last month, Tony Taylor was the first Vick crony to cut a deal and agree to testify against the Atlanta Falcons quarterback. With today's guilty pleas, all three of Vick's codefendants have admitted involvement in the operation of Bad Newz Kennels, which the trio has described as a brutal pit bull fighting operation that was headquartered at a Smithfield, Virginia property owned by Vick.


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