Tennessee Animal Fighting Defense Lawyer

Dog and Animal Fighting Charges

If you have been charged with animal fighting or being a spectator to animal fighting in Tennessee, the Knoxville criminal attorneys at the law offices of Baker Associates will employ powerful defense tactics on your behalf.

Our experience can help you understand the complex legal issues that arise when you have been charged with animal fighting. By investigating the issues involved we can often find weaknesses and inconsistencies in the government's case that help protect your legal rights. As a former prosecutor, Joseph A. Baker has the knowledge and experience necessary to properly defend you if you have been accused of animal fighting or being a spectator to animal fighting.

What is Considered Animal Fighting in Tennessee?

There are four unlawful acts that constitute criminal animal fighting:

Issues Relating to the Defense of Animal Fighting

For you to be found guilty of animal fighting in Tennessee, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed one of the unlawful acts discussed above. Moreover, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant acted with at least knowledge or a conscious disregard that,

However, an exception to these offenses exist where the defendant owned or possessed cocks for the sole purpose of selling or transporting the cocks to a place where such possession was legal. Further, there is an exception to this offense where defendant trains or uses hunting dogs for sport or that the training or use of dogs was for law enforcement purposes.

A person may also be convicted of animal fighting if he or she is simply a spectator at an animal fight. To be found guilty, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you knowingly were present as a spectator where preparations were being made for animal fighting, and that you intended to be present when the fighting was to occur. It is also an exception to this offense that the training or use of hunting dogs was for sport or that the training or use of dogs was for law enforcement purposes.

Consequences of Animal Fighting or being a Spectator at an Animal Fight in Tennessee

Animal fighting is a Class E felony, except for cock fighting which is a Class A misdemeanor.

Class E felony carries an imprisonment term of more than 1 year but less than six. In addition, a jury may assess a fine not to exceed $3,000. A Class A misdemeanor carries an imprisonment term of no greater than eleven months and 29 days, and/or a fine not to exceed $2,500.

Being a spectator at a dog fight is a Class B misdemeanor. At all other animal fights a spectator commits a Class C misdemeanor. A class B misdemeanor carries a possible imprisonment term of no greater than 6 months and/or a $500 fine. A class C misdemeanor carries an imprisonment term of no greater than 30 days and/or a $50 fine.

Other possible consequences can include probation and supervised release.

Protecting the Rights of Our Clients

In order to strengthen your position as one of our clients, attorney Joseph A. Baker and his associates have received the most up-to-date training available. By attending numerous seminars and colleges, including the prestigious National Criminal Defense College, each attorney at the law offices of Baker Associates will fight to see that your rights are protected in court.

If you have been accused of animal fighting or being a spectator to animal fighting in Tennessee, contact us to discuss your case.

To schedule a complimentary evaluation with a criminal defense lawyer at our offices, complete the form below.






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Knox County
2126 First Tennessee Plaza
800 South Gay Street
Knoxville, Tennessee 37929

Phone: (865) 521-0001
Toll-free: (866) 853-2888

Sevier County
121 Court Avenue
Sevierville, Tennessee 37862

Phone: (865) 546-6000
Toll-free: (866) 853-2888

Washington County
300 East Main Street
Johnson City, Tennessee 37601

Disclaimer: The animal cruelty or other legal information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice, nor the formation of a lawyer or attorney client relationship. Any results set forth here were dependent on the facts of that case and the results will differ from case to case. Please contact an attorney at our law firm. This web site is not intended to solicit clients for matters outside of the State of Tennessee.


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