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Rally for animal rights in Pueblo

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PUEBLO -

On Thursday, folks in Pueblo are rallying together to act as a voice for the voiceless.

A group of animal lovers are hosting a protest calling for the maximum penalty for two men behind a recently discovered dog fighting operation.

Early in February, 19 dogs were found with scars and wounds at a property on Pueblo's east side. In total, five men were arrested in the operation, two of which will appear in court today, Feb. 15.

The main suspect in the operation is 73-year-old Jerry Grady. During an undercover operation, Grady showed officers a homemade treadmill he used to train the dogs, and even described past fights.

After obtaining a warrant, officers arrested Grady and 35-year-old accomplice Armando Vigil.

Jerry Grady was arrested for dog fighting in 2001, but the charges were dismissed. This time, the community wants to make sure the punishment fits the crime.

"This is not sport, this is not a video game," said Diane Freed with the Pikes Peak Animal Rights Team. "These dogs are alive, they trust us, they're our companions and this is just - it's sick and it needs to stop."

Protesters are gathering at the Pueblo Justice Center at noon today, Feb 15. 

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