United Poultry Concers
26 April 2010
Cockfighting Raid and Arrest on Virginia Eastern Shore
First known arrest for cockfighting in Accomack County in recent memory. . . .

“Karen Davis, president of Northampton County-based United Poultry Concerns – a nonprofit organization that promotes the compassionate and respectful treatment of domestic fowl – applauded the arrest.” – Arrest Made in Cock Fighting, Eastern Shore News, April 24, 2010.

Seized chickens were gamecocks; suspects sought,” Eastern Shore News, April 21, 2010 http://www.delmarvanow.com/article/20100421/ESN01/4210319/-1/ESN

Arrest Made in cock fighting,” Eastern Shore News, April 24, 2010
UPC president Karen Davis contributed to this article explaining that cockfighters “basically drive the birds crazy with fear and trauma.”

“Enforce State Cockfighting Laws,” UPC Letter to the Editor, Eastern Shore News, April 24, 2010 Edition, A5 (p. 2 of 2 in online Letters to the Editor)

To the editor:

This is regarding the article “Seized chickens were gamecocks; suspects sought,” by Nancy Drury Duncan, in the April 21 Eastern Shore News.

I speak for many people on the Eastern Shore in wanting to see Virginia's anti-cockfighting laws strictly enforced. In addition to the seizure of 27 roosters from a cockfighting ring in Accomack County last week, I hope the perpetrators will be pursued, captured and prosecuted for their criminal activity.

In 2008, the Code of Virginia Section 3.1-796.124 was amended to strengthen the animal fighting law with stiffer penalties for engaging in the fighting of animals, including roosters, for amusement, sport or gain. Staged animal fighting has been banned in all states and constitutes a felony in interstate commerce.

Most birds used in cockfighting can be rehabilitated. Indeed, most are not even gamefowl per se, but are simply peaceful backyard birds terrorized and traumatized into pathetic acts of  “aggression” by their abusers.

I regret being unable to adopt any of these roosters into our sanctuary at this time. It's a shame that they will probably die for lack of good homes.

I hope that one or more of them may yet be adopted by good people. What a rooster wants more than anything in this world is simply to have one hen (or several) to watch over. – Karen Davis, President, United Poultry Concerns, Machipongo

Note: The Eastern Shore News reported that “Along with the roosters, other items related to cockfighting were found, such as a portable [cockfighting] ring, sharp blades to attach to the chickens’ legs, scales and vitamin supplements, according to testimony by Sheriff’s Deputy Jess Long in Accomack County General District Court.” April 24, 2010

Accomack County is directly above Northampton County where United Poultry Concerns is based on the Virginia Eastern Shore. For more information on cockfighting including the upgraded 2008 Code of Virginia Regarding Animal Fighting, click on www.upc-online.org/cockfighting/.

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