Cockfighting Outlawed, But Not Enforced

4-1-04 - Cockfighting, and raising game birds, is now illegal in all of Oklahoma, but don’t expect the law to be enforced anytime soon. And the wait is proving to be painful for neighbors in one Marshall county community.

One resident of Oakland says her neighbors fighting chickens make noise at all ours of the day. She’d hoped, when the state Supreme Court upheld a statewide ban this week, that the birds would be gone. But local police and deputies say they’re still waiting on official word of how to enforce the ban.

First News checked with District Attorney Mitch Sperry in Ardmore. He says his office and other DA’s are responsible for enforcing it, but as of yet, they have not received clear instructions from the state’s attorney general. Sperry says the law is so vaguely written, it's going to be very difficult to decide how and when to enforce it.

Voters approved the ban in November of 2002, which triggered lawsuits and injunctions to delay it. The ban makes fighting or raising the game birds for fighting a felony.