More than 50 arrested in cock-fighting op

March 7, 2009 3:15:40 PM PST
More than 50 people involved in a cock-fighting operation were arrested near a barn west of Rohnert Park on Friday afternoon, according to the Sonoma County Sheriff's Department.

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At about noon, the sheriff's department received a report of a possible cockfight in progress in the area of Arlington Road west of Rohnert Park.

Deputies and animal regulation officers, with the assistance of a sheriff's department helicopter, gathered at a barn where numerous people were seen fleeing.

Additional deputies responded along with officers from the Rohnert Park Department of Public Safety. A crew in the helicopter directed authorities on the ground to find the suspects who were seen fleeing and hiding nearby.

Fourteen law enforcement officials took 52 men and one boy into custody on criminal charges associated with cock fighting, according to the sheriff's department. Two people who fled and broke into an occupied house were captured and charged with burglary in addition to the cock-fighting charges.

Animal control officers took possession of about 150 cocks along with fighting spurs and other items associated with cock fighting, according to the sheriff's department. Cash also was seized.

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