Wednesday, December 31, 2008

HARLAN COUNTY, KY December 2008

Horses Found Neglected, Owners Arrested

Reporter: Jeff AllenEmail Address:

Horses Found Neglected, Owners Arrested

Several horses are found neglected, others missing, and one even dead. It is a case of animal abuse in Harlan County that landed two people behind bars and several others are facing charges.

Members of the Harlan County Humane Society say they received a complaint on Christmas night that some horses in the Wallins Creek community were neglected. When they went to the property, they say they knew that had to take action.

The horses were living on a property on Camp Creek Road, but officials say it wasn't much of a home. "There was no hay, anything for these horses. They were in a small area and just fenced off. The only thing they did have was water. No shelter for any of these animals," said Marcella Chadwick, Harlan County Humane Society President.

"It's unbelievable, to see something like this, to see people let their animals starve like this," said Robert Duncan with the Harlan County Humane Society.

Humane society officials made a gruesome discovery when they found one horse already dead.
"It was laying out in the open in a culvert. They had laid some pine limbs over it, I guess to keep us from seeing it," Chadwick said.

On Monday, police arrested the animals' owners, Edwin and Diane Sullivan. They are the first arrests from a investigation by a humane society that's ramping up it's efforts.

"We're gonna do what we can do to make people pay for treating their animals this way," Chadwick said.

Three horses are missing, but officials believe they will be able to nurse most of the horses back to health. One of the five rescued may not survive.

"He was close to gone when we took him. I don't know if he's gonna pull through this or not. We're hoping and praying," Chadwick said.

Edwin and Diane Sullivan were arraigned on animal cruelty charges Tuesday but declined our request for an interview. Officials plan to charge several other people in the case.

Officials at the Harlan County Humane Society say they are in desperate need of food for the rescued horses.
To donate feed to the horses officials say were neglected in Harlan County, get in contact with the Home Federal Bank in Harlan. If you have information in the case, call Harlan County Humane Society President Marcella Chadwick at (606) 909-4781.