Nearly One Dozen People Arrested And Several Roosters Rescued After Cockfighting Bust In California

A total of 8 died that day because of the cruelty of humans.

Credit: Humane Society

The popularity of cockfighting may be waning in the United States, but last month’s bust off the central coast of California is a harrowing reminder that roosters are still suffering at the hands of cruel people forcing them to fight to death.

Thanks to an anonymous tip, Santa Barbara County sheriff’s deputies descended on an active cockfight where around 50 people were gathered to watch and bet on the bloody event. Once the spectators saw the officers approaching, many of them fled the scene, but 11 people were apprehended and arrested on the spot.

What the deputies found at the scene was horrifying. Though they discovered about 20 live roosters in cages nearby, awaiting their fate, 6 roosters were already dead off to the side and 2 were badly injured and had to be euthanized.

Though some of the people in attendance were just watching, many were betting as much as $12,000 on the roosters and some were even carrying cockfighting paraphernalia. Among the devices that were confiscated were cockfighting blades, suture kits, betting slips, a scale and other items related to gambling.

Credit: Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department

Cockfighting is a felony in the majority of the United States for a good reason. When roosters are thrown in the ring, they have blades attached to their claws that are used to injure the other bird until they die. This often means by puncturing their lungs, poking their eyes, and breaking their bones. Even if the losing bird doesn’t die, it’s still thrown out like trash or killed regardless.

This crime is no worse than what is done to animals raised for food every single day, especially in the United States, but it doesn’t mean that it should be allowed or dismissed simply because other animals endure much worse. Ideally, both would become crimes and come to an end in the world, but until then battles must be won one at a time.

Cockfighting can be a misdemeanor or a felony in California, so it’s really a gamble when it comes to how these sick people will be charged. Sheriff’s spokeswoman Kelly Hoover said,

“The incident is a reminder that cockfighting is occurring in our county, and citizens are encouraged to report information related to this illegal activity to law enforcement right away.”

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