3 charged with cockfighting in Will Co.
BY JON SEIDEL Sun-Times Media firstname.lastname@example.org July 9, 2012 5:24PM
Three men have been accused of illegal rooster fighting in Will County, including one man who allegedly told police “it’s just a hobby.”
Jesus T. Ornelas, 30, and Rigoberto Ulloa, 33, both of unincorporated Joliet and Cain G. Ramirez, 34, of Peotone each face two counts of using animals in entertainment.
There seems to be no connection between the case of Ornelas and Ulloa — who were charged together Friday — and Ramirez, who was charged separately the same day. Police had yet to take any of the men into custody early Monday afternoon, a spokeswoman for the Will County sheriff’s office said.
Police also hit Ramirez with two misdemeanor counts of possessing a firearm without an owner’s ID card. Meanwhile, police said, Will County animal control was forced to humanely euthanize nearly 50 roosters.
Investigators learned of Ornelas’ and Ulloa’s alleged cockfighting after Ulloa applied to Will County for a permit to build a pole barn, police said. Officials looked at aerial photos of his property in the 17100 block of W. Rosalind Street, according to reports. They saw sheds he didn’t have permission to build.
Ulloa said he used the sheds for game birds, police said, but he agreed to take them down before building the pole barn. Meanwhile, according to reports, a neighbor complained about possible cockfighting there.
Will County Detectives visited the property June 12, police said, and found roosters with their combs, waddles and spears removed. They also said they found bottles of antibiotics and vitamins used to care for injured roosters, along with a vitamin B bottle labeled “for cockfighting.”
Police said Ulloa denied he’d been involved in cockfighting, telling officers he knew a lot about the crime because family members had been arrested for it in the past. He gave up 22 roosters to animal control, police said, and the agency was forced to destroy them.
The next day, police said, someone complained to Will County animal control about possible cockfighting by Ramirez in the 4900 block of W. Kennedy Road in unincorporated Peotone.
Will County officers said they found 27 roosters there June 25, all prepared for fighting by having their combs and waddles removed and their talons either cut or filed sharp. They also found a single-barrel sawed-off shotgun with ammunition, according to reports, and a Smith & Wesson .38-caliber handgun.
Police said Ramirez signed the roosters over to animal control, which was again forced to destroy the animals. They said he also agreed to an interview the next day. During that conversation, police said, Ramirez told them, “It’s just a hobby.”