May 22, 2011, SUBMITTED BY JEAN HOEFER ORTIZ
The next time you hear loud music from the car next to yours, pay attention. According to Memphis Police Department spokesperson Sgt. Karen Rudolph, the people inside may be committing a crime other than violating a noise ordinance. “There could be a cover up for dog fighting, which is called ‘trunking.’”
Trunking is not the typical dog fighting that often makes headlines and results in arrests. It’s a new and disturbing trend.
“Apparently what they’re doing is they’re taking two dogs they’re putting them in the trunk of the car,” Rudolph said.
Suspects may leave the car parked or drive around with the music up very loud. They let the dogs fight until one of them is dead, and then pop open the trunk and declare a winner.
“It’s really scary, and it’s usually younger kids,” said John Robinson of the Memphis/Shelby County Humane Society. “It’s people just popping up and doing things like that, but that is becoming more and more popular.”
Memphis police have been training officers on trunking since it came to their attention about a year ago. But often, it’s difficult for the public to know it is happening.
“It’s very challenging for officers and also citizens to even know that it’s going on,” Rudolph said.
Police want dog fighters to know officers are being trained on trunking, and they’ll be watching and listening. Rudolph said anyone considering committing this animal cruelty crime should know that trunking is a felony, just like any other kind of dog fighting.
“Any dog fighting will be handled the same way,” she said. “Just because they’re in the trunk it doesn’t stop it.”