MANCHESTER, Ky. — Two roosters tear at each other in a fenced ring in a recent match in Kentucky.
But even more shocking then the illegal fight in the ring may be who was in the crowd watching, says the Humane Society of the United States.
Camera footage from an undercover operation shows children and uniformed police officers attending the recent cockfight, the Humane Society says.
“Cockfighting is a cruel blood sport that is illegal in Kentucky and every other state,” said John Goodwin, manager of animal fighting issues for the group. “Kentucky police officers should not treat this criminal activity with a wink and a nod, and it’s another sign that state lawmakers must act to strengthen the penalties for cockfighting.”
The video released Tuesday shows fights at a cockfighting pit in Manchester, Kentucky, the Humane Society said.
As the roosters thrash at each other, the camera pans to the crowd of dozens gathered, cheering for the birds. At least four law enforcement officers can be seen in the crowd, including a Kentucky State Police trooper who was talking to a young boy.
Kentucky Gov. Steven Lynn “Steve” Beshear released a statement about the video.
“The Governor has spoken to the Kentucky State Police commissioner. Regarding this incident depicted on video, the Kentucky State Police are conducting an internal inquiry,” the statement said. “However, Kentucky State Police are fully committed to enforcing all criminal laws, including those against animal cruelty.”