December 20, 2019
What the hell even is this?
Why does it always feel like the end times these days?
Authorities are investigating after at least 15 horses were reportedly found fatally shot Tuesday near a strip mining site in Eastern Kentucky.
The horses were found along a strip job near the Pike and Floyd County line by U.S. Highway 23, WYMT reported.
Some of the horses were only one year old or younger, and some were pregnant, according to authorities, who added that it appears the horses were shot with a low-caliber rifle.
“This is very inhumane, and it’s a very cruel act of somebody who just apparently had nothing else to do or whatever, just to go back on a strip job and shoot down horses who were, one of them obviously was feeding, had grass in its mouth,” Floyd County Sheriff John Hunt told WYMT. “It looked like a battlefield for just horses.”
“Somebody who just apparently had nothing else to do or whatever…”
That is a very, very weird quote.
Hunt added that it was one of the worst cases of animal cruelty he has ever seen.
At the minimum, the perpetrator of the violent act will likely face animal cruelty charges, according to authorities.
Hunt said authorities spent most of Tuesday morning trying to reach the strip mine location to confirm the number of horses that have been killed, but rainy weather made travel difficult up the hillside, according to the Floyd County Chronicle & Times.
Hunt also said most of the horses “were scattered out.”
Hunt posted an update Thursday morning on the Floyd County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page stating that deputies along with members of Dumas Rescue, a local animal rescue group, and veterinarians “will go back today to gather more evidence and information that will hopefully assist in the investigation.”
“The site where these horses are located can only be accessed by ATV/UTV type vehicles so we are having to coordinate with individuals to help transport us back to the location,” Hunt said. “We will be announcing soon the total reward amount as it has increased substantially. It has been heartbreaking seeing these beautiful horses killed but it had equally been heartwarming to see all the concerns and see all the support in assisting in the investigation and to give the living horses a good home. Thank you to everyone.”
A veterinarian will reportedly conduct a field necropsy on one of the horses this week to confirm the cause of deaths.
The NPR headline on the story calls it “evil,” and has quotes from a woman who lives nearby, who says the horses were hunted.
At least two of the slain horses were pregnant and miscarried after being shot, says Megan Goble, who lives near the site. Her family owns part of the land that has become home to the horses. She says the horses lived in two main herds, and she describes them as a mix of animals that were brought there by their owners and those that were born in the secluded area.
“There’s a lot of people within our community that go up there and feed them or just go see them or whatever, because, I mean, it’s beautiful back there and it’s a bunch of horses running,” Goble says.
Of the idea that someone would go into the area and shoot 15 horses, Goble says, “I mean, it’s just horrific, and it’s shook this community pretty good.”
In an update about the case on Thursday, the sheriff’s department said that the reward amount “has increased substantially.”
The department added: “It has been heartbreaking seeing these beautiful horses killed but it had equally been heartwarming to see all the concerns and see all the support in assisting in the investigation and to give the living horses a good home. Thank you to everyone.”
The first call about a group of dead horses came in on Monday, says Goble. That first call referred to as many as five carcasses. Goble, who works in animal rescue, says it took an extra day to begin realizing the full scope of the crime, as cold and stormy weather washed out roads and slowed search efforts. Crucially, Goble’s family owns a road that goes into the old strip job: An early attempt by sheriff’s deputies to reach the area had to be called off when they couldn’t make it through.
When Goble and the deputies reached the area where the dead horses were, she says, “It was a lot worse than I would have imagined.”
“We found five of them that were relatively close together” in roughly a 50-yard space, Goble says. Others were more scattered, she says — and she believes there may be other dead horses that still haven’t been found.
“I’ve done rescue for a long time. I’ve seen some pretty bad things,” Goble says. She adds, “This was different. This was a very large act of evil, for lack of a better term. I mean, there’s no other way that I can describe it. Somebody went out of their way to go up there and kill these horses, and not even quickly, for no reason. No reason whatsoever.”
Describing the carnage, Goble says a yearling had been shot in the face. Other horses had clearly struggled and suffered before dying. It was a stark change from the normal scene there, she says, as people regularly visited the horses to bring them hay or other food during the winter months, when foraging can be difficult.
“Some of them were friendly,” Goble says of the horses, “and you could go up there and they’d walk right up to you.”
Another group involved in the case is Dumas Rescue, which has helped care for the horses in the past — and which is now helping the sheriff’s department search the woods for dead or wounded animals.
“At this time we are all reeling from the effects this horrendous scene has had on our group and the investigating officers. Please keep us in your prayers,” Dumas Rescue says on its Facebook page.
“These horses were scattered in various, various places — distances from each other,” Dumas Rescue’s Tonya Conn told WYMT, saying that the animals would normally have been found in groups.
“So they had been shot, and they’d scattered, and then [were] hunted and shot down.”
The rescue group contributed to the reward, and it has been inundated by people offering their own money to boost that total — people outraged by the craven and brutal violence against the horses. Dumas Rescue says the current $1,500 reward doesn’t reflect those offers of help, because it’s trying to ensure it handles the donations legally.
I don’t know if anything like this has ever happened before. With this many animals slaughtered.
It truly is shocking.
And yes – “evil” is the word. You don’t need to lack a better term to use that word.
Killing animals (excluding for food purposes, or removal of pests or danger or whatnot) is always evil. And horses are intelligent animals.
I suppose we are desensitized to humans being killed, so the animal stories are more shocking. But it’s also that when you hear about a human killing another human, you know there’s some kind of reason. Even if it is a bad reason. Even mass shootings, it’s usually because the person like, hates their classmates or something. The only reason you would kill a bunch of horses is just actual evil.
I sure hope they catch whoever did it.
I wouldn’t be surprised if it was somehow connected to satanism. In fact, I would be surprised if it wasn’t. Most senseless acts of violence are done by brown people, but I would be extremely surprised if that was the case here.
Horses are often killed in satanic rituals.
Although it was never solved, there was a case in 2012 in Britain where it was believed the killers of a horse were satanists.
BBC, January 11, 2012:
Police investigating the mutilation of a horse in Cornwall have said they “cannot rule out” a link with a Satanic ritual.
The stallion was found dead in a field in Stithians on Monday with knife injuries to its head and body.
The attack, which happened shortly after St Winebald Day – a date on the Satanic calendar – has prompted speculation of a ritualistic killing.
“Obviously that is one line we’re going to pursue,” Insp Chris Strickland said.
But he added it was not “the only line” officers were investigating.
The officer from Devon and Cornwall Police said he was aware of discussions on internet forums linking the killing to a Satanic ritual and, although it was a “strong possibility”, he insisted police also had other leads.
Mr Strickland said he was keeping an open mind on the subject.
“I have done my own research on the internet and there are people out there who have these beliefs and so that is a strong possibility, but there are other leads we have got as well and other possibilities or motives,” he said.
And also in France.
French police are investigating two shocking incidents which saw a horse butchered and several sheep sexually abused then gratuitously slaughtered on the same night. Authorities believe the killings may have been part of a satanic ritual.
Walkers near the south west town of Perpignan made a horrific discovery at the weekend, when they stumbled across several sheep lying dead by the path.
It soon became clear that the sheep had not perished through natural causes.
On closer inspection they had been abused and then slaughtered at the hands of humans, French news site Direct Matin reports. After being sexually abused, the animals were stabbed, burned, strangled with wire, had their fleeces torn off, stoned, then had limbs amputated, the newspaper says.
There are tons of these stories, actually.
Though I cannot find any that involve guns. And most of them involve mutilation. None of them involve this large number of animals.
As shocking as the Kentucky story is, it is not getting a lot of media coverage. Which suggests to me that the media itself thinks it’s satanic. They tend not to talk too much about these things.