The daughter and granddaughter of famed black power activist Malcolm X were arrested on charges of cruelty to animals as well as car theft, La Plata, Maryland police report.
Officials say that an off duty Prince George’s County officer became suspicious of a vehicle and called the plates in over his radio, only to discover the vehicle was reported stolen in Vermont earlier in the day. The officer alerted authorities and a Charles County police officer spotted the U-Haul truck.
Police stopped the vehicle in a Walmart parking lot on January 25. Officers discovered 51-year-old Malikah Saban Shabazz and 19-year-old Bettih Bahiyah Shabazz inside the vehicle. Both were arrested, Fox 5 D.C. reported.
What was inside the truck was unexpected. Investigators discovered seven pit bull terriers, some with injuries, stuffed into small cages inside the truck. As a result of the discovery, police charged the older of the two women with animal cruelty for the inhumane conditions inside the truck.
Animal control officers removed the dogs and report they are in stable condition.
Malikah Shabazz was charged with seven counts of animal cruelty and car theft. Bettih Bahiyah Shabazz was charged only with theft.
The 51-year old Malikah Shabazz is the daughter of assassinated Muslim activist Malcolm X, whose real name was Malcolm Little but later changed to Malik el-Shabazz when he converted to Islam. Bettih Bahiyah Shabazz, Malcolm X’s granddaughter, seems to have no fixed address.
Malikah Shabazz has been in trouble with the law before. In 2011 she pleaded guilty to identity theft after amassing $55,000 in debts under the name of the widow of one of Malcolm X’s past bodyguards. She was sentenced to probation in that case, the Associated Press reported.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.