Fifty-one people have appeared in court over the past few days as part of an alleged cockfighting ring on the Nipomo Mesa, according to the District Attorney’s Office.
The man initially suspected by police to be the ringleader, Ramon Pinon Gutierrez, entered a plea of no contest for the misdemeanor of being a spectator at a bird fight.
But prosecutors said that Gutierrez is just one of the many who allegedly attended the fight and is no longer being suspected as the ringleader.
Gutierrez, 52, of Nipomo, was sentenced to 18 months probation, two days in County Jail, and can’t own roosters or fighting equipment.
Each of the people arrested was charged with the misdemeanor of being a spectator at a bird fight.
Four people in the alleged ring failed to appear in court, according to the DA’s Office.