Case Snapshot
Case ID: 10863
Classification: Fighting, Neglect / Abandonment
More cases in Philadelphia County, PA
More cases in PA
Login to Watch this Case

New features are coming soon. Login with Facebook to get an early start and help us test them out!



For more information about the Interactive Animal Cruelty Maps, see the map notes.



Monday, Feb 26, 2007

County: Philadelphia

Charges: Felony CTA
Disposition: Convicted

Defendants/Suspects:
» Barry Paul White
» Joseph Roberts

Case Updates: 8 update(s) available

An alleged participant in a West Kensington dogfighting operation was easy to spot - police say they saw him walking down the street covered with blood.

A preliminary investigation into the source of the blood Monday led officers to an abandoned house near where the suspect, Barry White, 32, lived on Madison Street near Shelbourne, police from the East Detective Division said yesterday.

Inside, investigators said they found a makeshift fighting ring, a set of "poorly constructed cages" and 11 dogs, all in poor health and some injured and bloody.

The scene was indicative of a gambling ring involving dogfights, police from East Detectives said in a statement.

White and Joseph Roberts, 44, of the same address, were charged with animal cruelty and criminal conspiracy, both felonies.

They were arrested after plain- clothes officers observed White walking down Madison Street in bloody clothing.

The seized dogs were taken to the Philadelphia Animal Care and Control Association, where chief executive officer Tara Derby-Perrin said yesterday that they had been transferred to the Pennsylvania SPCA. The animals need to be held for prosecution of the defendants, and keeping them at PACCA could mean euthanizing other healthy dogs to make room, she said.

A spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania SPCA could not be reached late yesterday to learn the condition of the animals.

Detective Gil Ortiz said that at least two of the dogs had "bleeding, open wounds and were very withdrawn, hiding in the cages."

Ortiz said several of the dogs were "definitely fighting dogs." Others were under a year old, and several of them were "really tore up" and may have been used to train the others, he said.

All but one appeared to be pit bulls and the other a pit-bull mix, Ortiz said.

Police suspect the men charged as little as $5 to watch dogfights.

Ortiz said officers seized $3,600 in cash, most of it in small denominations.

Besides cages and the fight ring,investigators also seized a number of items apparently used to "train" or otherwise agitate dogs, the police statement said.

A vehicle used as a dog pen and another containing other evidence also were seized.


Case Updates

A Common Pleas judge yesterday found a 45-year-old Kensington man guilty of animal cruelty and conspiracy charges after a nonjury trial and sentenced him to two years' probation.

Defendant Joseph Roberts also was ordered to pay a $1,000 fine to the Pennsylvania SPCA.

Prosecutor Jennifer Mitrick asked the judge to send Roberts to prison. Public defender Roger Schrading asked for probation.

Roberts lives in a house on Madison Street near F, where police and SPCA investigators in February found 12 wounded pit bulls in the house, the yard and a minivan outside. The officers found evidence of a bloody dogfighting ring in an abandoned property behind the house.

Roberts' stepson, Barry White, 33, pleaded guilty last month to the dogfighting charges.

Schrading told Judge Earl Trent Jr. yesterday that there was "not one shred of evidence linking" Roberts to the dogs or to the dogfighting ring.

"The sins of the stepson should not be visited on the stepfather," he said.
Source: Philly.Com - Nov 15, 2007
Update posted on Nov 16, 2007 - 1:06AM 
A Philadelphia man was sentenced to six to 23 months in prison, and given a $1,000 fine and 50 hours of community service for running a dogfighting ring in Kensington.

Barry White, 33, of the 700 block of East Madison Street, was sentenced Nov 13 by Common Pleas Court Judge Ramy I. Djerassi.

Before Djerassi sentenced White, the judge said he took under consideration information provided by the defense that White was so physically abused as a child that, at 16, he fled his Philadelphia home for North Carolina.

After serving his jail term, White will perform his community service with the Pennsylvania SPCA.

White had been found guilty of cruelty to animals and conspiracy to commit cruelty to animals for running a dogfighting ring at his East Madison Street home.

He also used a nearby home in the 700 block of East Willard Street for the dogfighting.

Before he serves his Philadelphia sentence, White will return to Asheboro, N.C., where he faces animal abuse charges.

Leonard Knox, an official with the Pennsylvania SPCA who attended today's hearing and testified, said he had wanted a stiffer sentence, to send a message to other dogfighting organizers.

"It's what the judge ordered," said Knox, who helped Philadelphia police in arresting White in February.

"If the judge gives more fines and fees the better, since we have other cases. We're getting more cases reported."

Similar charges against White's co-defendant Joseph Roberts are expected to be heard before a different judge at the Criminal Judicial Center on Nov 14, according to Jennifer Mitrick, who is prosecuting the case.
Source: Philly.Com - Nov 13, 2007
Update posted on Nov 14, 2007 - 12:55PM 
On October 16, a Kensington man pleaded guilty to running an illegal dogfighting operation and was ordered to give up his dozen pit bulls.
"It was about the same as [suspended NFL quarterback] Michael Vick, but with less money," Wayne Smith, an animal-cruelty investigator for the Pennsylvania SPCA, said yesterday.

Barry White, 32, of the 700 block of East Madison Street, pleaded guilty to cruelty to animals and conspiracy to commit cruelty to animals.

If Common Pleas Court Judge Ramy I. Djerassi imposes the maximum sentence, White could land in prison for 14 years and pay a $30,000 fine. But under a plea agreement still to be approved by the judge, White could be sentenced to between six and 23 months and fined $50,000.

"He has committed a pretty grave offense," said Djerassi, who said he did not have enough information yet to render a sentencing decision. "It was systematic and barbaric."

During the hearing, Djerassi was informed that White faces similar charges in a North Carolina case. He revoked bail and ordered White to forfeit his dogs to the PSPCA.

"That was great," Leonard Knox, another PSPCA investigator, said after the hearing.

Assistant District Attorney Jennifer Mitrick said that police investigating a homicide had discovered the dogfighting ring Feb. 26 by accident.

The officers, including Donald Murdoch Jr., came upon White and Joe Roberts, who were standing on a corner, covered in blood, she said. White told Murdoch and his partner that he was dealing with a dog in heat, Mitrick said.

But when White produced the dog, Murdoch noticed the animal did not appear to be bleeding. A second dog, badly mangled and chewed, was then produced.

Roberts, who is charged with animal cruelty and conspiracy, told a reporter that he knew nothing about White's activities or dog cruelty and did not intend to plead guilty.

"I'm afraid of dogs," he said.

He added: "There's no comparison with Vick's case and this case. With Vick, they found dead dogs. In this case, they found only one wounded dog."

Djerassi set separate hearing dates for White and Roberts next month.

Investigators said a search of a nearby property turned up dog pens, treadmills, weighted neck collars, syringes, and specialized sticks used to pry apart dogs during battle. Investigators also found the dozen dogs.
Source: Philadelphia Inquirer - Oct 17, 2007
Update posted on Oct 18, 2007 - 5:01PM 
Joseph Roberts and Barry White are scheduled for trial on October 16 at 9:00 a.m. in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas.

The two face felony charges of animal cruelty and criminal conspiracy stemming from alleged participation in a West Kensington dogfighting operation.

The scene was indicative of a gambling ring involving dogfights, police from East Detectives said in a statement in February.

White and Roberts were arrested after plain- clothes officers observed White walking down Madison Street covered in blood.
Source: CR0008791-2007 and CR0008780-2007
Update posted on Sep 5, 2007 - 2:36PM 
Accused dog-fighters Barry White and Joseph Roberts will appear in court for formal arraignment on felony charges of animal cruelty and conspiracy on August 10, 2007 at 11:00 a.m. in the Phildelphia Court of Common Pleas.
Source: Case # CR8780-2007 (Roberts) CR8791-2007 (White)
Update posted on Jul 23, 2007 - 8:15PM 
Yesterday in Municipal Court, authorities revealed the gruesome scene they stumbled upon at the home of Barry White, 32, and his stepfather, Joseph Roberts, 45, and in an abandoned property behind their house. Some pit bulls were bleeding, their bodies and paws chewed up. Some were skinny and looked diseased or neglected.

Police Officer Donald Murdoch Jr. testified at White and Roberts' preliminary hearing that at about 9:45 p.m. Feb. 26, he thought he spotted a homicide suspect among a group of men outside on Madison Street.

It wasn't the right guy. But this man, Stephen Skinner, had blood all over his sneakers and pants, Murdoch said. So did another man, who turned out to be White.

In explanation, White, who lived on that street, said, "His dog is in heat; he was trying to breed his dog," Murdoch testified.

Murdoch asked to see the dog. The first "thin pit bull" brought out from White's house "didn't have a drop of blood on him."

So White had another dog brought out. This pit bull's "face was bleeding, its body ripped, it was all chewed up," Murdoch testified under questioning by prosecutor Robert Lynch.

Murdoch then saw two more pit bulls in a green minivan nearby - one's face was cut up.

After placing White in custody and calling the Philadelphia Animal Care and Control Association, Murdoch searched the house with other officers. He then met Roberts, who said he didn't know what had happened to the dogs.

In the basement, Murdoch found "very thin dogs" in dirty kennels. More kennels littered the back yard, where one dog was bleeding, he said.

Across the alley, in the rear of an abandoned house, Murdoch saw even more kennels. Inside that house, he saw "what appeared to be a fighting ring" with "blood all over" the carpeted floor and wooden-boarded sides.

He found "four more pit bulls chained" in that house and also saw "treadmills with chains."

Under cross-examination by Roberts' lawyer, public defender Aaron Marcus, Murdoch confirmed that he did not see any blood on Roberts.

Pennsylvania SPCA police officer Leonard Knox, who also investigated that night, testified yesterday that among the dogs he saw in White and Roberts' basement, was a "black pit bull in very bad condition, very lethargic. It appeared to have just been fighting. It was bleeding, bleeding bad."

At the end of the hearing, held at the police building on Whitaker Avenue near Erie, Judge Harvey Robbins held White and Roberts for trial on felony charges of cruelty to animals and conspiracy. White was also charged with false identification; initially, he allegedly said he was someone else.

After the hearing, Knox said the SPCA was caring for the 12 pit bulls found at the two houses and was trying to make them adoptable.
Source: Philly.com - Jul 14, 2007
Update posted on Jul 16, 2007 - 12:37PM 
Accused Philadelphia dog-fighters Barry White (aka Carlos Deloatch) and Joseph Roberts will appear in court next on July 13, 2007 at 8:30 a.m. for a preliminary hearing.

Both face felony charges of cruelty to animals and conspiracy, stemming from an alleged dog-fighting bust in February.

They two were arrested after plain-clothes officers observed White walking down the street covered in blood.

An investigation into the source of the blood led officers to an abandoned house near where White lived on Madison Street.

Inside, investigators said they found a makeshift fighting ring, a set of "poorly constructed cages" and 11 dogs, all in poor health and some injured and bloody.

Detective Gil Ortiz said that at least two of the dogs had "bleeding, open wounds and were very withdrawn, hiding in the cages."

Ortiz said several of the dogs were "definitely fighting dogs."

Besides cages and the fight ring, investigators also reportedly seized a number of items commonly used to train fighting dogs.
Source: Docket #'s CR-0009289-2007 and CR-0009274-2007
Update posted on Jun 7, 2007 - 4:20PM 
Barry White (aka Carlos Deloatch) and Joseph Roberts appeared in Philadelphia Municipal Court for preliminary arraignment on February 27, 2007. They face felony charges of cruelty to animals, conspiracy, and providing false identification to a police officer. They were released from custody on $10,000 bail, and will appear in court next on May 1, 2007 at 10:30 a.m. for an arraignment status hearing.
Source: Philadelphia County Docket # MC-51-CR-0009289-2007 & MC-51-CR-0009274-2007
Update posted on Mar 2, 2007 - 2:36PM 

References

« PA State Animal Cruelty Map
« More cases in Philadelphia County, PA

Note: Classifications and other fields should not be used to determine what specific charges the suspect is facing or was convicted of - they are for research and statistical purposes only. The case report and subsequent updates outline the specific charges. Charges referenced in the original case report may be modified throughout the course of the investigation or trial, so case updates, when available, should always be considered the most accurate reflection of charges.

For more information regarding classifications and usage of this database, please visit the database notes and disclaimer.