Harrah Cockfighting Ring Suspects Now Face Nearly 90 Related Charges
The couple busted in a Harrah cockfighting ring in January are in more hot water.
Charges in the case have been amended to include 88 cockfighting related charges.
Justin McHone, 38, and Tara Gentry, 41, were arrested in January after the multi-jurisdiction Anti-crime Support Effort (MASE) team stumbled across the ring while serving a search warrant on an unrelated case.
The ring was located on a property east of Harrah off of Highway 62.
The two face one count of instigating or encouraging cockfighting, servicing or facilitating cockfighting, and 86 additional charges of owning, possessing, keeping or training a bird for cockfighting.
“We've got a full count of the number of fighting chickens, there were 86 that were confiscated,” said Allan Grub, the Lincoln/Pottawatomie County District Attorney. “Since they admitted to the ownership of all those birds, they had the fighting pen there, we believe all of those charges are maintainable and each of those charges carries up to 10 years a piece.”
By the end of January, the Tulsa area nonprofit, Oklahoma Alliance for Animals, rescued all 86 roosters and hens. The animals were placed in loving homes.
One crime, investigators quickly learned, turned into multiple.
“Methamphetamines were found at the residence, there were guns found at the residence, we believe that there was illegal gambling going on,” said Grubb. “It’s just patterns and practices of crimes that we want to discourage in our district.”
The nearly 90 charges may seem drastic, but prosecutors hope it shows all Oklahomans this activity will not be tolerated.
“By holding them accountable to the full course of the law in this, I think it is a very important message to send to my citizens that we are going to stop the outbreak of crime in our district,” said Grubb.
Both suspects remain out of jail on bond.
McHone and Gentry are due back in Lincoln County Court April 2.