Monday, August 20, 2007
Updated: August 24, 3:03 PM ET
Vick timeline in dogfighting case
ESPN.com news services
April 25, 2007: Police serve the warrant in Surry, Va., the day after Michael Vick's cousin, Davon Boddie, was arrested on drug charges and listed the house as his address. The police and animal-control officers find 66 dogs - 55 of them pit bulls -- and what appears to be a dog-training complex of dark-painted buildings in the woods just behind the house, which is owned by Vick. Police obtain another warrant and seize the dogs and various items.
May 23, 2007: Investigators get a third search warrant, but prosecutor Gerald G. Poindexter decides not to execute it, saying he is worried the dogfighting warrants are tainted because the animal-control officers might have been overzealous in their searches.
June 7, 2007: Another search of Vick's property by more than a dozen representatives of the U.S. attorney's office in Richmond, U.S. Department of Agriculture and Virginia State Police. They execute a sealed federal search warrant.
July 2, 2007: Court documents are filed in which federal authorities allege that a dogfighting venture called Bad Newz Kennels had operated at the Vick property for the past five years. The U.S. attorney's office files papers seeking federal government ownership of about 53 pit bulls that were among the dogs seized from Vick's property.
July 6, 2007: Another search of the property by federal authorities, again seeking evidence of dogfighting in the form of animal remains.
July 17, 2007: Vick and three other men are indicted by a federal grand jury on dog fighting charges for activity over a six year period. Vick's name is mentioned 48 times in the 18-page indictment, which accuses Vick of breeding and training fighting dogs, hosting dogfights, killing dogs considered unable to fight and traveling out of state for dog fights. If convicted, Vick would face six years in prison and $350,000 in fines.
July 18, 2007: Arraignment set for July 26 in federal court in Richmond. That is the same day as Falcons' opening training camp.
July 19, 2007: Nike suspends the release of the latest product from the Michael Vick footwear line, "Air Zoom Vick Five". Vick items already on the market will not be recalled, Nike says.
July 20, 2007: On the same day protestors from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals line up outside NFL headquarters in New York City urging the league to "Sack Vick," reports say the league, the NFL Players Association and the Falcons are urging Vick to take paid leave for the 2007 season
July 23, 2007: NFL commissioner Roger Goodell orders Vick not to report to the Falcons' training camp until the league reviews the dog fighting charges, citing the league's conduct policy.
July 24, 2007: Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank holds a news conference, saying he was prepared to give the maximum 4-day suspension to Vick before the NFL stepped in. He refuses to comment on Vick's future with the team, but calls the behavior "horrific."
July 26, 2007: Vick pleads not guilty in federal court in Richmond. He waived his right to a speedy trial. His trial date is set for Nov. 26.
July 27, 2007: Reebok, a Vick sponsor, stops selling NFL products related to Vick, including his No. 7 jersey replicas. Also, Upper Deck is pulled Vick trading cards from sets to be released this fall, and removed autographed Vick memorabilia from its online store. Rawlings Sporting Goods has also ended its relationship with the beleaguered player.
July 30, 2007: Co-defendant Tony Taylor pleads guilty to dog-fighting charges. Taylor also agrees to cooperate with the prosecution, including testifying at his co-defendants' trial. Also, Vick tells Atlanta radio station WVEE-FM he's put the Falcons through a lot but hopes he can play with the team again.
Aug. 17, 2007: Vick's other two co-defendants, Purnell Peace and Quanis Phillips, plead guilty to dogfighting charges. They say they traveled with Vick to dogfights and described, in detail, "executing approximately eight dogs that did not perform well in testing sessions" by hanging and drowning.
Aug. 20, 2007: Vick's lawyer, Billy Martin, says that Vick agrees to plead guilty to dogfighting charges.
Aug. 23, 2007: Vick signs plea agreement and statement of facts admitting to conspiracy in a dogfighting ring and helping kill pit bulls. He denied betting on the fights, only bankrolling them.