Livingston

Cockfight stopped before it gets started

One of the roosters confiscated by the Merced County Sheriff's Department.
One of the roosters confiscated by the Merced County Sheriff's Department. Submitted photo

A cockfight was stopped before it could start Saturday in Stevinson, the Merced County Sheriff's Department said.

Detective Brandon Thomas of the Merced Sheriff's AG STAR Team heard reports that up to 150 birds were scheduled to fight, with up to 250 people in attendance.

Luis Flores, a 47-year-old resident of Turlock, was allegedly traveling to the event when the detective pulled over his truck around 10 p.m. Flores was arrested on suspicion of possessing roosters for the purpose of fighting. Four of Flores' fighting roosters were confiscated, according to Deputy Tom MacKenzie, sheriff's spokesman.

He was cited and released.

Thomas responded to a residence in the 22000 block of River Road in Stevinson, not far from where Flores' truck was stopped. Thomas discovered 10 more fighting birds at the gathering, along with several dead roosters.

The owner of the home was cited by animal control for violations related to inhumane treatment to animals. The animals were turned over to Merced County Animal Control.

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