LAWRENCEBURG, Tenn. — Lawrence County Sheriff Capt. Adam Brewer said he struggled to view photos an investigator showed him of abused and neglected horses.
“From what I understand and what I saw, it was pretty rough,” Brewer said, describing the scene investigators found when they went to a residence outside Loretto on Wednesday to investigate a possible case of animal cruelty.
“From all indications, it appears (the owners) just left the horses to starve.”
Brewer said the deputy who responded to the call found three dead horses inside a fenced-in area and a fourth dead horse in the back yard at property on Legg Lane. Investigators said the carcass had been exposed to wild animals.
Brewer said about a dozen more horses on the property were in bad shape. He said the deputy who went to the property said there was water available for the animals but no barn or other type of shelter.
“He said there was very little grass in the pasture, and what was there had been eaten down to the ground,” Brewer said. “The horses were malnourished. Basically, there was no feed, no hay or no grass around for them to eat.
“To me, this is nothing but a blatant case of neglect.”
Brewer said charges have not been filed, but he said they could be forthcoming.
Reports indicate no one was home when the deputy arrived at the residence. Efforts are under way to remove the animals still alive at the property.
“Our investigator has talked with one of our local extension agents, who has worked with us in the past, and we are trying to make arrangements to get the animals still alive some help,” Brewer said. “We get calls from time to time of possible animals being neglected and malnourished. A lot of times they’re just old. That wasn’t the case this time.
“There was no excuse for this. These animals were neglected to the point they starved to death. It’s sad that anyone would let something like this happen to an animal.”
Tom Smith can be reached at 256-740-5757 or tom.smith@TimesDaily.com.