OMEGA, Ga. (WALB) - Twenty people were arrested Sunday night for participating in chicken fights.
The Worth County Sheriff’s Office didn’t let our camera near the scene because Sheriff Don Whitaker said the scene was too horrific for people to see. Deputies found an arena for people to watch the blood sport.
In the remote area where it was found in Worth County, very close to the Tift County line, the sheriff’s office said a sign would lead people to participate or watch roosters fight.
Whitaker said it’s a very sad situation.
“I’ve got four deputies down there right now feeding over 200 chickens and watering them. It’s just awful to look at, to be honest with you,” said Whitaker.
Sheriff Whitaker said one of his deputies had some information this type of crime was going on in the county and his office has been investigating it for months.
“I told the deputy to get a backup unit and go to the area or the residence where they had a tip. They actually came out and walked right in, it was open to the public to come in,” explained Whitaker.
This kind of crime is kept very secret, and Whitaker said only those who are supposed to know about it, knew.
“So, they weren’t really watching for law enforcement being this is such a secluded area, the deputies walked right in while the chickens were fighting. As they did, many of the people fled to the woodline,” Whitaker told WALB.
Whitaker estimated about 60 people were at the scene, but they were only able to catch around 20. Those that were caught are now being held and interviewed.
“There’s chicken coops galore back there, and there’s a fighting arena back there, they even had gone to the point of setting up a snack stand where they were selling food,” said Whitaker.
In rooster fighting, injecting steroids and attaching razor blades to the chickens’ legs are just some of the abuses.
“We discovered several dead roosters in here, that’s the reason I’ve got a doctor with the state. These people involved in it, they spend a lot of money, they charge admission when they come in. There’s scales in there, they weigh the chickens so when they compete, they’re a certain weight class of each other. It’s very complicated but there’s a lot of money involved in it,” said Whitaker.
Medical staff is tending to the roosters on scene. This is an active and ongoing investigation.