“We initially came out looking for narcotics and evidence of theft,” said Sheriff Lou Duggard. “But once we started really looking around, we knew something wasn’t right. It was obvious that these chickens weren’t cared for properly.”

After more than 200 starving and injured chickens were removed from his southwest Missouri property, Berry D. Davis, was charged with multiple felony counts of fighting animals and animal abuse.

The Stone County Sheriff’s Office, with the help of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, rescued the chickens last week from a property suspected of conducting cockfights for money.

The sheriff’s office had twice searched Davis’ home. Deputies say that they were initially looking for narcotics, but ended up finding more…

Check it out from the Kansas City Star:

Davis has been in custody since March 2 on charges of drug possession and stealing. Prosecutors filed more charges against him on Friday, including two counts of fighting animals and a count of second-degree animal abuse.

Items they found included gaffs and spurs, used to equip roosters for fighting, the ASPCA said in a news release.

The chickens found there also had injuries consistent with cockfighting. Birds were found to be “living in makeshift wire cages, many without access to proper food or water,” the ASPCA added.

The organization helped deputies with evidence collection, medical assessments and ongoing care of the birds at a temporary shelter in an undisclosed location with support from the Great Plains SPCA in the Kansas City area.

“Cockfighting is a heinous form of animal cruelty that causes unimaginable suffering for the birds who are forced to fight, and the ASPCA is committed to tackling organized animal fighting across the country,” Tim Rickey, vice president of ASPCA field investigations and response, said in a statement. “The ASPCA encourages the public to alert authorities when they suspect animal fighting activities in their communities, and we commend the Stone County Sheriff’s Office for taking swift action with this investigation.”

We are just glad that this man’s evil little enterprise has been shut down. It’s obvious that hurting defenseless animals aren’t his only crimes: he’s got drug and theft charges in addition to his cruelty case.

Lock this guy up and throw away the key!

What do you think? How much time should he get in jail?