WESTMORLAND -- A Brawley man was arrested Tuesday morning near Westmorland by county Sheriff’s Office personnel for offenses related to cockfighting.

John Matthew Chappelear was booked into county jail and held on $100,000 bail before subsequently posting bond and being released, said Lt. Jimmy Duran.

Sheriff’s Office arrest records stated that Chappelear was booked for felony animal cruelty and possessing a bird/animal for the purposes of fighting, a misdemeanor.

The Sheriff’s Office enforcement action resulted in the confiscation of several roosters, hens and chickens, Duran said.

Equipment typically used for cockfighting, such as blades and training and sharpening tools were also allegedly discovered at the property in question, which was in the unincorporated area near Westmorland, Duran said.

Chappelear is currently employed with the Imperial Irrigation District, a spokesperson said. In 2017, Chappelear was employed as a superintendent of general water operations maintenance, according to the Transparent California website.

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David Corona Sr.

The rumors have been swirling for quite a while. Word is that even an IID Director would attend this place.

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