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October 20, 2022

During Kensington drug bust, police seize ATVs and animals used for fighting

The PSPCA took in 89 chickens, 8 dogs and a bearded dragon lizard after investigators conducted the raid

Investigations Drugs
Kensington Drug Bust Animals Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

Philadelpia police seized drugs, guns, illegal ATVs and dirt bikes, and nearly 100 animals used for fighting while executing search warrants in Kensington on Thursday.

Philadelphia police who were carrying out a drug bust Thursday in Kensington also seized an array of guns, ATVs and animals suspected to be used for fighting, officials said. 

Narcotics officers who were serving warrants on the 3100 block of Weymouth Street found more than 30 ATVs and dirt bikes, which are illegal to ride on Philadelphia streets. Eight people were arrested, but their identities were not immediately released. 

Police also discovered roosters and dogs that police believe were used for fighting. ACCT Philly responded to the scene to address the animals. 

"We were called out to the scene and walked the property, however upon seeing suspected violations of the cruelty code we referred the case to PSPCA and remained on scene until they arrived," ACCT Philly spokesperson Sarah Barnett said.

PSPCA spokesperson Gillian Kocher said 89 chickens, including hens and roosters, were taken to the organization's Philadelphia headquarters. Eight pit bulls also were taken in by PSPCA, including five adults and three puppies, Kocher said. One bearded dragon lizard was taken as well, for a total of 98 animals. 

"They have all been surrendered into our care and will undergo forensic examinations to determine what charges may be filed," Kocher said. "After that is completed, the animals will be placed in adoptive homes or seek rescue placement."

Video from the scene showed a police vehicle towing away ATVs.

Police later said officers seized heroin, cocaine, crack cocaine and marijuana valued at more than $43,000, in addition to $126,000 in cash. Seven handguns and two rifles also were taken, along with a total of 24 ATVs and nine motorcycles. 

Philadelphia police have been attempting to crack down on ATVs and dirt bikes on city streets in recent months, empowered by a new state law that gives police more latitude in seizing the vehicles