Animal Welfare

Police Busted a Huge Cockfighting Ring Over the Weekend in West Oak Cliff

Late Saturday night, Dallas police descended on North Counts Boulevard in an isolated part of West Oak Cliff after neighbors called to complain of crowds, noise, and what turned out to be an enormous cockfighting operation.

According to police, officers found some 200 live roosters, many equipped with razor blade spurs, kept in makeshift pens surrounding a fighting ring. Another 15 -- the losers -- were dead. Animal control officers later euthanized several more who were too badly injured to save, city spokesman Frank Librio told CBS 11.

Neighbors and witnesses told police the fights were a regular occurrence.

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Police detained 23 people during the sweep and wrote them tickets for attending a cockfight, which is apparently prohibited by city code. A few dozen more spectators fled when police arrived, though many apparently left their cars, about 70 of which were parked at the property. When their owners came to retrieve the vehicles, police reportedly told them to pay a ticket or leave the cars there.

"It's $500! It just sucks so much," one man, Byron Flores, told WFAA before hastening to explain that the car he was there to pick up was a friend's, not his. He was quite indignant on his friend's behalf.

"Honestly, I think the ones that should get in trouble are the ones that brought their roosters to fight -- not those coming to watch."

That will probably happen, too. The owner of the property was not among those detained on Saturday night, though police are conducting an animal cruelty investigation.

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Eric Nicholson
Contact: Eric Nicholson