Police clear some 500 people off Nanakuli property during cockfight raid
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By Minna Sugimoto
NANAKULI (HawaiiNewsNow) – Residents of Hakimo Road in Nanakuli have split opinions regarding a massive police raid in their neighborhood Saturday. Officers armed with a search warrant broke up a cockfighting event that was attended by an estimated 500 people.
Police made four arrests. Loreto Arzaga, Jr., Joseph Lai, Frank Lavatai and Patrick Takahashi were later charged with animal cruelty.
Home video shows the police helicopter overhead as officers shut down a heavily-attended cockfight in Nanakuli.
“There were maybe 500 people back there at this cockfight. Is that typical?” this reporter asked.
“Yeah, yeah,” Arthur Magallanes, neighbor, said. “It can get to five (hundred), maybe more.”
A parade of cars left the property located behind a metal gate at the end of a long driveway off Hakimo Road.
Some neighbors, who did not want to speak on camera, are happy about the raid, saying the cockfights create noise and traffic. Others aren’t bothered by them.
“They park inside of the property, so no problem here,” Magallanes said. “I got nothing against it.”
“I guess some neighbors did complain,” this reporter said.
“I guess so, yeah,” Magallanes said. “I don’t know. I’m not one of them.”
People attending a cockfight place bets on which gaff-wearing chicken will survive the bloody battle. Some argue it’s a cultural activity, and that police should focus on more serious crimes.
“They should let it go, man,” Magallanes said. “It’s one of their, you know, hobbies, what they want to do on their days off, weekends and stuff like that. Just let it go.”
Neighbors pointed out a man as the owner of the property, but he denied it. He told us his job is to feed the chickens.
“Take care of the chickens only, ma’am,” he said.
“How many chickens are back there that you take care of?” this reporter asked.
“I don’t know, maybe around 100-something,” the man replied.
He admits the chickens are later used in cockfights.
“They know that illegal, too, but they do it,” he said about the attendees. “But me, I no do nothing.”
“You just raise the chickens?” this reporter asked.
“Yeah,” the man replied.
The suspects range in age from 18 to 44 years old, and are free after posting bail.
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