MARLBORO COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - More than 100 birds were seized from a residence in Marlboro County, and 27 people were arrested in a cockfighting bust.
Marlboro County Sheriff's Office in addition to SLED, The SC Department of Natural Resources and SC Forestry Commission executed a search warrant at a residence on Kollock Road in Wallace, SC, according to authorities. The resident of the home and promoter of the cockfighting event has been identified as Carson Clark. Clark, along with his 21-year-old son and 25 others were arrested in connection to the case. Police say an investigation began a few weeks ago with an anonymous tip that lead to surveillance and other investigative techniques.
Police say 122 gamefowl, and one dog with 10 puppies were rescued. Carolina Waterfowl Rescue removed the animals to a safe location. According to MCSO, during the search, marijuana, cocaine, firearms, several thousand dollars in cash entry fees and cockfighting paraphernalia were also seized from the residence.
“Cockfighting is a barbaric bloodsport that is taken seriously by law enforcement in South Carolina. We were too glad to assist the dedicated officers in Marlboro County to shut down a cockfighting enterprise that only brought crime and violence to the community. With stronger laws on the books, our authorities could be even more effective in wiping out cockfighting everywhere in our state,” said Kimberly Kelly, South Carolina state director for The Humane Society of the United States.
Carolina Waterfowl Rescue assisted with the operation and is housing the rescued roosters. The organization is only able to house the birds until April 10, or they will be euthanized. The group is seeking rescue organizations and private homes with references to take the birds.
"These are actually the sweetest most well-behaved group of roosters we have ever dealt with. Please help us save them!" the group stated in a Facebook post.