Cock fighting ring uncovered after traffic stop in Dooly county -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Cock fighting ring uncovered after traffic stop in Dooly county

By  Stephanie Springer  - bio | email

PINEHURST, GA (WALB) –A south Georgia sheriff's office uncovered a cock fighting ring.

A Dooly County deputy found scarred and bloody roosters in a car during a traffic stop on Interstate-75. That led to the discovery of more than 100 roosters in one suspect's Peach County back yard.

In addition to the injured birds, officers seized more than 7,000 dollars cash when they stopped the vehicle.

They believe the money was won in these fights and now they're working to put a stop to these crimes.

Its not unusual for a traffic stop to turn into something more in Dooly county, "Anything is possible on I-75," said Major Craig Peavy, Dooly Co. Sheriff's office.

But it is unusual for officers to find three game cocks. An officer discovered the birds Saturday night, after he pulled over 54 year old Antonio Barajas and his 34-year old son Antonio Medina Barajas after he saw them weaving in and out of lanes.

The roosters were in a wooden box in the back of the vehicle. Two were covered in blood, one of those had a serious injury to its eye, the other was uninjured. "Apparently they had been involved in chicken fighting, cock fighting within the last several hours," said Investigator Randy Lamberth.

"Most likely we had 6 game cocks here to begin with and now we just have three," he said.

The men lived in Peach County, and when investigators executed a search warrant for the father's home they made a shocking discovery in the backyard. "You could tell they were into cock fighting," said Lamberth.

More than 150 chicken and roosters were caged in the backyard. Investigators estimate more than 80 percent were game cocks,

Authorities also discovered scales used to weigh the roosters before a fight, roosters without their crowns, and tools used for training and fighting birds.

He also discovered some the roosters were caged high off the ground, and in other ways to strengthen the birds. "It is just like someone training for boxing, you exercise and basically that's the same thing you do with these roosters," he said.

Officers say they have no idea how long these men have been raising chickens, and there is no telling how many have died.

Since the men gave conflicting statements to officers, they are not sure where they were coming from with the birds, but they think they may have been coming from the Tifton Area.

Both suspects were charged with two counts of cruelty to animals. The son was also charged with an open container violation.

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