18 arrested in Tift Co. cock fight bust - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

18 arrested in Tift Co. cock fight bust

Tift Co. Animal Shelter picked up over 40 roosters from the property Tift Co. Animal Shelter picked up over 40 roosters from the property
TIFT CO., GA (WALB) -

Tift County Animal Control rescued 42 birds from the property after the fight was broken up around noon Saturday. Some of those bird weren't so lucky. Officials say they found several dead roosters in a field near the fighting ring. Six others were badly wounded.

"My animal control officers received a 911 call around 12 o'clock," says Director of Tift County Animal Control Regenia Wells.

That's when officials with Tift County Animal Control arrived to find the house on Sherri Lane swarming with people.

"There was a deputy here already and they (suspects) were running," says Wells.

18 people were caught and arrested on possible charges of animal abuse and illegal gambling.

"You can have these roosters like this right here, I mean and raise them and sell them. That's not against the law. But the fighting part is against the law," says Wells.

Tift County Animal Control rescued 42 roosters from the back of the property where the cock fight took place.

"We're taking all the birds with us to the Animal Shelter where they will stay until we find a proper home," says Wells.

Officials estimate the birds are worth anywhere between $100 to $2,000 a piece.

While Tift County deputies say the case is still under investigation, they do say the owners of the birds and anyone who was involved in placing bets during the fight will face serious charges.

Officials say they found a list with the names of the roosters, their owners, and how much money was placed on each bird during the fight. Deputies say the case is still under investigation but they do say each of the 18 people arrested could face felony charges of aggravated animal cruelty.

No names have been released. Officials say 10 cars were impounded and alcohol was involved. The injured birds are being treated at Tift County Animal Shelter.

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