Quarter Horse Jockey Charged With Felony Related To Buzzer - Horse Racing News | Paulick Report

Quarter Horse Jockey Charged With Felony Related To Buzzer

Danjer and jockey Cody Rodger Smith win the Bank of America Challenge Championship (G1) at Horseshoe Indianapolis on Oct. 22, 2022

A month after being summarily suspended by the Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission, jockey Cody Rodger Smith has been charged with a felony related to use of a buzzer in a horse race on Nov. 15, 2022.

Smith was charged on Jan. 24 and arrested the following day, according to online court records. He has since made his $2,000 bond. His arraignment is scheduled for Jan. 31 in Roger County District Court.

A probable cause affidavit dated Jan. 5 narrated the investigation conducted by law enforcement. Smith rode Zbars Live Wire to victory in the Grade 1 Speedhorse Paint and Appaloosa Futurity at Will Rogers Downs in Claremore, Okla., on Nov. 15. Afterwards, police were contacted by the owner of Speedhorse magazine, which had a photographer on site for the event. According to the affidavit, the photographer's images “show a large bulge in Cody's left gloved hand with two metal prongs protruding from the glove, which is consistent with an electronic device.”

Additional photo evidence from the official track photographer showed the same outline and prongs protruding from Smith's gloved hand.

The Speedhorse photographer told police that after she posted her images on social media “Haley Luneack contacted her to take the picture off face book [sic] as it shows the device.”

According to her Facebook profile, Luneack is in a relationship with Smith.

Support our journalism

If you appreciate our work, you can support us by subscribing to our Patreon stream. Learn more.

The affidavit went on to state that police interviewed Luneack, who said “she received several messages from other people pointing out the device in Cody's glove.”

In an interview with police Smith stated “it's not what it looks like,” according to the affidavit.

“Cody later admitted to taking the buzzer with him when he left the jockeys' room after the races,” the affidavit stated.

Smith was summarily suspended in December for “conduct detrimental to horse racing, possession of contraband, and prohibited use of equipment.” The stewards denied an appeal of Smith's summary suspension on Dec. 12 and he has not ridden since.

Smith is one of the top Quarter Horse riders in the country, having been ranked 24th by earnings in 2022 and fourth in 2019.

Paulick Report Icon

Receive daily headlines, breaking news alerts, promotions, and much more!

Become An Insider

Support our journalism and access bonus content on our Patreon stream

Learn More