Saturday Dec. 5, 2015
I got the call to dig into a topic that’s not a usual one, not for me anyway — cockfighting.
In a pair of raids, Indiana State Police reported they had discovered 200 roosters at alleged breeding facilities for cockfighting sessions, one of them in rural Elkhart County. A reporter on our real time desk handled the initial coverage of the press release and the next day I was asked to dig a bit more deeply.
No one from law enforcement was very forthcoming. I pulled what I could from Elkhart County jail records.
The real meat came from a pair who live around one of the suspected breeders, a man named Victorino Rosales, including a neighbor who recalled cock fights years ago. I also ended up getting info from the Indiana Board of Animal Health, called in to help examine the 200 birds.
Neighbors to Rosales counted 20 or so law enforcement vehicles during the raid, with some officials toting what appeared to be heavy arms, and I followed the initial story with a blog on the massive size of the operation. Jail records show Rosales was released shortly after his arrest, along with another local man detained, and we’ve received no official word yet about formal charges. The coverage:
- “Suspect Elkhart County home had hosted cockfighting sessions many years ago, neighbor says,” Dec. 1, 2015
- “Elkhart County rooster raid adds drama to an otherwise quiet weekend night,” Dec. 2, 2015