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Police Bust Alleged Cock-Fighting Ring

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Harnett Co. authorities took 24 roosters from an alleged cockfighting ring.
COATS — Law enforcement in Harnett County say they haveput an end fo what they say was a large cock fighting ring. A total of 34 people face charges today after deputies practically stumbled onto acock fight near the town of Coats.

Police found about 24 roosters and took them to the Harnett Countyanimal shelter. A judge will determine what will be done with the animals.Deputies say it is possible they did not catch everyone involved in theoperation, since they came upon the scene unexpectedly.

Animal Control officer Wayne Faircloth says he has never seen such alarge operation where the fowl were raised strictly for fighting.

Deputies also recovered spurs, money and scales -- all signs of acock fighting operation. In the same home, deputies found a liquor still.

Harnett County Sheriff Larry Knott says the operation appeared to bevery professional.

Deputies say they don't know how many cock fights may have taken place.Charges related to cock fighting include only fines, up to $500, butanimal control officers and deputies say that taking the 24 roosters was agood step.

Deputies had gone to the house to make an arrest on a charge unrelatedto the cock fighting or the still.

Reporter:Terri GrucaPhotographer:Michael Joyner

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