One by one he went down the line and beat the dogs, each heavily chained, ignoring their piteous crying, their cowering stances. What kind of a person does this? How can someone ignore a living creature’s cries of pain and misery and continue to beat and torture them, one after another, day after day?

A person like this needs to receive the punishment he doled out again and again to these poor innocent dogs!

A 29-year-old man was arrested on almost 30 counts of mistreatment of animals after a Fort Pierce police officer said he observed the man torturing dogs on Saturday on South 24th Street.

Nahume S. Belvilus, of the 200 block of South 24th Street, was arrested on nine felony counts of cruelty to animals and 19 counts of abandoning or confining animals without food, water or exercise. He was being held in the St. Lucie County Jail Sunday on $175,000 bond.

According to an arrest affidavit, Fort Pierce Police Officer Daniel Gilroy responded to Belvilus’ address at 4:27 p.m. Saturday after a 911 caller said dogs might be made to fight there.

Animal Control Officer Ken Nelson, who also was called to the scene, reported finding 25 pit bulls in the fenced yard. He said there were a few dogs that were in need of immediate medical care and about 10 others possibly in need of medical care, according to the affidavit.

Gilroy said when he arrived at Belvilus’ home he heard a commotion in the backyard, where he said there were two to three dogs barking frantically and another two dogs crying and whimpering as if they were in pain.

Looking through a broken fence slat, Gilroy said he saw Belvilus beating a black pit bull with a long, thin stick.

“As I stood at the fence watching the torture of the dog, I was only feet from three other chained dogs,” wrote Gilroy in the arrest affidavit. “These dogs barked at the suspect and did not notice my presence. The suspect continued to strike the dog as it cried in pain and offered no resistance.”

Gilroy wrote that Belvilus then walked a few feet to another chained pit bull that “appeared to know what was about to happen.”

He wrote that the dog “cowered on the ground crying as the suspect approached. The dog covered his snout with his paws and took each blow from the suspect with a loud cry. I could see three (to) four other dogs in the yard that did not bark and hid in fear as the torture continued in close proximity of them.”

According to Gilroy, Belvilus then began to torment a third animal.

“It appeared to me that the suspect was systematically torturing each animal in a row and was likely to continue the infliction of pain and suffering unless stopped,” he wrote.

Gilroy called for backup and at about that time and tried to find a way to enter the back yard. Belvilus then allegedly noticed Gilroy was there. Belvilus reportedly went in through the home and exited the front door before Gilroy made contact with him. According to Gilroy, Belvilus said that he raises pit bulls for sale and runs his business out of his home.

According to Gilroy, some of the chains on the dogs were so large that when the small dogs jumped they never left the ground. He wrote there were two dogs in the inside shelter that had no water and that it was full of their own feces.

For the most part, the dogs were timid, according to Gilroy. He wrote that they were “dreadfully afraid of my presence.”

“I found a couple of dogs were emaciated,” wrote Gilroy.

According to the officer, the dogs’ ribs could be seen easily, some of the dogs’ fur was falling out in clumps and they had open sores on their bodies.

“We tried to coax some of the dogs with dog biscuits in order to take photographs,” wrote Gilroy. “These dogs were terrified to take and eat the food, despite the fact they were starving.” (TCPalm)

There’s only one reason for this situation – dog fighting!! Break them down then build them back up into cruel fighting machines! We can only hope these poor dog were rescued in time. Sadly most dogs rescued from dog fighting rings, innocent victims though they are, have to be put down because they are too aggressive to be trusted.

This story has already gotten a few comments about the depravity of this individual but one of the comments in particular bothered me;

This is a sad story. However, I predict a LOT of comments. I personally feel it is a sad state of affairs when people comment more about mistreated animals than mistreated children. Parents abuse their kids all the time and hardly anyone cares enough to comment, but beat a dog, and look out.

Don’t get me wrong – I think this guy deserves to be punished severely, but I feel that some people have their priorities screwed up if they feel hurting an animal is worse than hurting a human.

Yes, children are abused, no one denies that, but are we supposed to ignore th pain and suffering of those ‘without voices to speak for their selves?” No living creature should be hurt, tortured or abused! And although they are obviously not always followed, there are strong laws in place and strong penalties for crimes against human beings, especially children. Their plight is taken seriously. Too often the plight of innocent and abused animals is not! Dogs, unlike children, are considered possessions. Caring and having compassion for abused dogs and animals does not negate your caring and compassion for children.

Why do people feel the need to compare the two? And denigrate those who make efforts to improve conditions for animals? People who hurt animals need to be dealt with harshly as studies have proven over and over, those who hurt, abuse, torture and kill animals are much more apt to turn on a human being next time. Do you honestly think a man who is capable of the cruelties this Belvilus was inflicting on these dogs would hesitate to beat or hurt a person? The cycle of cruelty has to end!

And as another commenter said, “It is not worse but just as bad. Both children and animals are helpless. I am just glad to see by all the comments that are written when a story like this hits the papers or TV news that there are still people who care. I hope that he gets the maximum punishment for what he has done …”

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