DeLand, FL – A DeLand man is in the Volusia County Jail on three felony charges of animal abuse just days after beginning one-year probation for misdemeanor animal cruelty. DeLand Police say 34-year-old Tiberius Dixon had five pit bulls, 2 adults and three puppies, at his grandmother’s home where he is living. His probation terms include not having any animals.
Police responded to an animal complaint at the home on November 1. The property owner told officers that Dixon brought the five dogs onto her property and she did not want them there. Officers found the dogs in the backyard in poor condition. One dog was in a metal crate with no floor and the other dogs were tied to a fence. Dixon was not at the residence.
The officers noted that none of the dogs had access to food or water and the area had a strong odor of feces. The puppies were covered with fleas, had skin irritations on their bodies and appeared to not be taken care of. The puppies ribs could be seen and their bellies were bloated, symptoms of parasites. The officers found and cleaned out five bowls, filling them with fresh water for the dogs.
Officers returned to the property the next day, November 2, just after 8:30 a.m. Tiberius Dixon was there and so was his grandmother, who again gave officers permission to go into the yard. The adult dogs were gone but the puppies were still on the premises.
Dixon told officers that he knew he wasn’t supposed to help animals but was keeping the puppies for a friend. When asked about the adult dogs, Dixon said their owner took them but could not provide an address for that person. Dixon explained further that the owner of the puppies was on the way to pick them up but could not give the owner’s name or phone number.
Officers informed Dixon that because having the puppies was in violation of his probation, they would be removed from the property. Dixon indicated he understood that the puppies had to be removed and why. The puppies were taken to DeLand Animal Hospital where they were treated for their health issues. Staff said the puppies were emaciated and that the condition took time to develop. The puppies were transported to the Second Chance Kennel.