Man faces charges for alleged animal fighting ring in North Fort Myers

Writer: Derrick Shaw
Published: Updated:
Michael Miranda Rivera, 36

A man faces multiple charges related to alleged animal fighting in North Fort Myers.

Lee County Domestic Animal Services contacted the Lee County Sheriff’s office Agricultural Unit to respond to a possible animal cruelty situation on South Road in North Fort Myers.

When deputies arrived, the property’s tenants were not present but the owner granted permission and access to the property.

Deputies saw multiple roosters, each caged separately, within a barn located on the property.  An octagonal structure with three to four foot sides was discovered. Through the glass-door of a refrigerator, syringes and Vitamin B-12 were visible.

Domestic Animal Services officer recognized that animals are commonly injected with hormones and steroids to increase their aggression.

Deputies found spurs commonly used in chicken fighting, along with multiple animal stimulants, antiseptic, Vitamin B-12, sparring mitts, a scale and other items indicative of chicken fighting.

The majority of roosters had feathers removed from their breasts, legs and back and had their cones and waddles removed, LCSO said.

At the scene deputies found identification belonging to Michael Miranda Rivera, 36, on the premises. Rivera turned himself in on May 20 at the Lee County Sheriff’s Office.

A total of 57 fighting roosters, eight hens and 30 baby chickens were seized.

Rivera is charged with two counts of Selling/Using Equipment for Animal Fighting, one count of Possession of Animals used for Fighting and one count of Own/Lease Property Used for Animal Fighting.

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