Alleged horse neglect in Ripley County - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Alleged horse neglect in Ripley County

(Source: cNews) (Source: cNews)
(Source: cNews) (Source: cNews)

DONIPHAN, MO (KFVS) - UPDATE: Sheriff Barnett spoke with a veterinarian who tells him he is looking at the horse at 7 p.m. Tuesday. Yet, the sheriff is not aware of the location of the horse. He says it is possible the horse was on the property and just out of sight. It is also possible it has been moved.

--------------------------------------------

It's an issue brought to our attention by Heartland News viewers. You asked us to find out more about a very thin horse in Ripley County. Several viewers sent in pictures of the emaciated horse, asking us for information.

After talking with Ripley County authorities and Missouri State Highway Patrol Rural Crimes investigators, we discovered the animal is at the center of a divorce. It's a situation, authorities say it complicated, yet not grounds to let an animal suffer.

According to Sheriff Ron Barnett, he believes attempts were made to feed the animal, yet it was allegedly not necessarily cared for properly.

Pictures of the horse were taken off Highway K near Doniphan on land apparently belonging to Greg Greenwood.

"He says the horse belongs to his ex-wife, and she has had 90 days to remove it. That's coming up in September," said Sheriff Barnett.

Barnett says he contacted Mr. Greenwood's ex-wife about the situation.

"I advised her the animal needs to be in the care of a vet who knows how to deal with it. I was told it's 25 years old and has no teeth," said Sheriff Barnett. "No matter what I don't want to see any animal go hungry."

Barnett says the situation is complicated. He says if the animal isn't being cared for there could be an animal neglect case.

"I told them to get the animal to a vet as soon as they possibly could," said Sheriff Barnett.

When our crew arrived on the property Monday afternoon there was no sign of the horse. Sheriff Barnett says both parties indicated the horse would be cared for and he believes it is with a vet or at a good home under professional care.

Ray Brandon lives near the property. He took one of the pictures sent to our station. He says he took the photo late last week. Brandon says he was surprised to learn the animal was in the hands of Mr. Greenwood, someone he knew to care for his animals and land.

"Me and the kids had been trying to feed it," said Brandon. "I know this is a hard situation for Mr. Greenwood. I know he'd been trying to feed it. I believe he did all he could."

Brandon says he had watched the horse wither away over the Summer.

"It took a while," said Brandon. "The heat and the horse is old. It wasn't always in that condition. I drive by here a lot."

As of Monday evening, Heartland News still did not know the exact location or condition of the horse. Again, no one is facing any charges at this time.

Heartland News spoke with Mr. Greenwood's ex-wife on the phone. She says she has no comment on the situation at this time.

Copyright 2011 KFVS. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly