Cockfighting breeding suspected in Eagle | VailDaily.com

Cockfighting breeding suspected in Eagle

EAGLE, Colorado ” Roosters that police suspect were being groomed for cockfighting were found Friday at an Eagle home, Eagle police said.

After getting a tip from a neighbor, authorities got a search warrant and found the roosters in cages outside the downtown-area home Friday, said Sgt. Terry Simpkins of the Eagle Police Department. The combs and wattles on the roosters’ heads had been cut, grooming consistent with birds used in cockfighting, Simpkins said.

Just under 10 birds, including hens, were confiscated by the Bureau of Animal Protection and will be examined by experts, Simpkins said.

The residents of the home, which was being rented, were tending to the birds but denied that the animals were being used for cockfighting, Simpkins said. The owners of the birds have not yet been determined, he said.

Cockfighting did not appear to be happening at the home, but tips from local residents indicate that cockfighting is going on elsewhere in the county, Simpkins said.

Fighting, breeding and possession of fighting roosters is a felony that carries a sentence by one to three years in prison.

Char Quinn of the Eagle Valley Humane Society and the Bureau of Animal Protection, who is conducting the investigation, declined to comment on the case Tuesday because the probe is ongoing. The animals are now in the custody of the Eagle Valley Humane Society.

Quinn said she’s not aware of cockfighting ever happening previously in the county, though she’s heard rumors of it.

“It’s a horrid death, and it’s terrible for people to have enjoyment in watching living things die,” she said.

If you have information about this case, call the Eagle Police at 970-328-6351 or Eagle County Crime Stoppers at 970-328-7007, 800-972-TIPS, or by submitting your tip online at http://www.tipsubmit.com.

Staff Writer Edward Stoner can be reached at 970-748-2929 or estoner@vaildaily.com.