Youngstown man accused of cockfighting: Animals ‘have space, cages’

Two other men, Rogelio Rojas-Pena and Luis Rodriguez, were bound over to the Mahoning County Grand Jury

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – One man accused of running cockfighting rings on Youngstown’s east side said the city never had a problem with him keeping chickens in his home before.

Police arrested Rogelio Rojas-Arzuaga for keeping farm animals after a search of his home on Forestview Drive. The city seized two dozen roosters.

People can’t keep chickens and roosters in the city without a permit.

Rojas-Arzuaga told the judge, through an interpreter, he did not understand why the city was charging him.

“They have given me charges for having chickens in my home, but the city has been to my house five times and they said it was okay. They have their space and they have their cages.”

Rojas-Arzuaga pleaded not guilty.

He could face a jail sentence on the charge, along with fines and probation. Rojas-Arzuaga asked for an attorney to defend himself.

He will appear in court again on January 9.

Two other men in the case, Rogelio Rojas-Pena and Luis Rodriguez, were bound over to the Mahoning County Grand Jury on Friday.

When police searched an Ives Street home this month where the two men were, they found heroin, syringes and dozens of roosters. Humane agents said the men used the animals for cockfighting, which is illegal in Ohio.