Cockfighting bill advances in Oklahoma Senate - - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - |

Cockfighting bill advances in Oklahoma Senate

(Oklahoma City-AP) -- A state Senate committee has approved a bill that would make cockfighting a misdemeanor rather than a felony.

The measure rewrites an initiative adopted by voters in November that made it a felony to own or raise fowl for fighting.

The cockfighting penalty under the new bill would be a $500 fine and up to a year in jail. Attending a cockfight would carry a $200 fine.

Democratic Senator Frank Shurden said Wednesday that rural Oklahoma has fallen victim to a smear campaign by animal rights activists pushing the cockfighting ban.

Republican Senator Mark Snyder says the public has spoken and lawmakers have a responsibility to accept the will of the people.

The bill now goes to the Senate floor for consideration.
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