December 21, 2020
Harlan County, Kentucky is well known as possibly the most corrupt place in the United States of America. Thanks to the misdeeds of the Kentucky State Police last Saturday, this dubious distinction will not fade anytime soon.
By way of a quick lead-in, approximately two weeks ago, SHARK received information regarding a cockfight location in Harlan County. As a courtesy, we alerted the state police that we were in the process of tracking down a lead. For the next few days, we worked to firm up the information, and a team was sent to Kentucky.
Our investigators located the cockfight building and took pictures of it. They obtained an actual schedule of events. We learned the name of the person managing the cockfighting - an individual named Randy Hornsby - and learned that it is Hornsby listed on the schedule.
The cockfighting schedule SHARK found
But there was one other detail we learned about the cockfight location that worried us - this cockfight has been held at this building for years, which means that the police absolutely knew about it already.
The next cockfight was scheduled for Saturday, December 19. On Friday, December 18, we gave the Kentucky State Police all of our accumulated evidence. This amount to an early Christmas gift - an incredibly easy, but major bust for multiple violations of state and federal laws, including animal cruelty, illegal gambling, illegal drugs (always present at cockfights), and blatant violations of current executive orders regarding Covid-19.
The state police thanked us for the information. We told them that we would check the site the following day to make certain that nothing happened. We were told that if anything did happen, we should inform them, and they would put a stop to it.
Next, I actually called Randy Hornsby, the person putting on the cockfight, and left a message informing him we had talked to the police, and that he should not try to hold the fight. We wanted to make absolutely certain that birds did not die the next day. Later on Friday, we sent out an update informing you of the developments. We were very pleased that another cockfight had been shut down.
The next day, however, everything went off the rails in a way we never imagined.
On Saturday we figured that we would simply confirm that there was nothing going on. The schedule indicated that the doors were to open at 3:00. At approximately a quarter to three, four vehicles showed up.
This was a big and most unwelcome surprise. We wasted no time making the 45-minute drive to State Police Post 10 to inform them. We had to drive to the station because while cell phone coverage is poor in the town of Harlan, it is non-existent in the region of the cockfight.
We were told that a supervisor, Sergeant Rob Farley, would be coming to talk to us. We didn’t understand why anyone wanted to talk to us when what was really needed was police moving to the cockfight location to shut it down.
We waited for some time for Farley to arrive. Farley was extremely impersonal as he told us that they were investigating the cockfighting location based on a complaint (ours), and that was all he could tell us. We asked if that meant that they were going to deal with the issue that night, and Farley only repeated that there was an ongoing investigation, and he would not provide more information.
I got a very tight, cold feeling in my gut, because we went through this with the state police in June over a cockfight location in McCreary County, Kentucky. I thought we had gotten way past this nonsense, but here was this cop playing coy with us while animal abusers were getting ready to slaughter hundreds of animals!
I told Farley he was making a big mistake, because the state police were going to look very, very bad if they didn’t do their jobs, claiming that they were investigating while actually allowing more crimes to occur.
We headed back to the cockfight property, where there were now well over fifty vehicles massing, with more coming in. We shot some video, and took a still image of the parking area back to the police. The now clearly corrupted Kentucky State Police refused to do a thing! I can’t even begin to describe our anger and frustration.
A picture of the cockfighting location with more than 50 vehicles present
We had given the state police an enormous amount of evidence, and went so far as to call the cockfight organizer to warn him not to hold his animal abuse.
How Randy Hornsby, the cowardly animal abuser must have laughed, because he knew that he had the Kentucky State Police in his pocket!
So the cruel, illegal cockfight proceeded in spite of our best effort, thanks to the corruption of the Kentucky State Police. But I am making a promise.
As president of SHARK, I hold myself responsible for trusting these badged criminals. SHARK does not, never has, and never will declare all police to be bad, because we know that this simply isn’t true. But we know that enough Kentucky State Police are corrupt that we will never again trust them in any way.
I will work tirelessly to expose every single one of them that I possibly can. If I can possibly get any of these thugs fired, and keep them from ever operating as law enforcement officers again, I will do it.
It’s been a long time since I was this angry, or witnessed this level of sleaze from criminal thugs posing as police.
This is no different than the days of Prohibition when crooked cops took payoffs to let gang-run establishments serve alcohol. Just like today with drug dealers paying off corrupt cops to traffic drugs. In this scenario, SHARK, HFA and our supporters like you are the Untouchables. We don’t quit, and we don’t back down, and we want you to help force an investigation into this corruption.
I have initiated a complaint into the Kentucky State Police, and will push for a full investigation. I have demanded that all evidence in this matter be preserved, including video and audio files, emails, logs and any other relevant materials.
From the very beginning of our Crush Cockfighting campaign, we knew the real challenge was simply to get the police to enforce already existing laws. Cockfighting only flourishes in places where there is rampant police corruption, which is why cockfighting flourishes in Kentucky like no other place in the country.
From SHARK's undercover video of a KY cockfight
This whole campaign is about crushing cockfighting, but it is turning into going after the Police to get them to do their job, which they refuse to do. The police are blatantly protecting the cockfighters.
Even if you contacted Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear previously, please contact him again and demand he take action. Contacting him everyday is even better. So far Beshear has been worthless, and we need to out him for the do-nothing that he is.
Phone: (502) 564-2611
SHARK is grateful to everyone who called the state police late Saturday night after getting our email alert of this dire situation. Thank you for the feedback you provided. Thank you!
Now we have to push harder - much, much harder - to send a clear message that we will NOT be ignored and that the police WILL either do their duty, or get out of law enforcement. Remember - cockfighting is illegal - violating both state and federal laws nationwide.
There will be much, much more to come on this story of animal abuse and police corruption. We’re doing everything we can for our animal friends, and we thank you again for having our backs!!!