Six horses recovering, but 19 died
Six horses -- Andre 3000, Conan, Falina, Gemini, Jute and Misha -- are being cared for at a rescue organization in Zimmerman, Minn., after they were removed from a farm near Hewitt because they were starving.
Nineteen horses weren't so lucky. They were found dead at the same Hewitt farm after a Todd County Sheriff's Deputy followed up on a report on May 25 that horses were running loose on U.S. Highway 71 south of Hewitt. The deputy found the horses at Lelin Goodgine's farm on Raccoon Road, and noticed the animals were thin and appeared to be malnourished, according to a news release by Todd County Chief Deputy Bryan Tebben. The dead horses appeared to have been dead for a long time, according to the deputy.
The horses were owned by a man who had been in Wadena County Jail since early May for a DUI charge, according to the sheriff's department. Nine horses were still alive but in poor condition. The Animal Humane Society arranged for the horses to be removed from the residence.
The Minnesota Hooved Animal Rescue Foundation in Zimmerman rescued the remaining nine horses that were still alive but three were put down for humane reasons, according to the foundation's Web site.
"Words like 'horrible' and 'gruesome' simply can't do justice when describing the scene at a farm in Todd County," according to the Web site. "It was like the horses just laid down to sleep and never woke up."
Brief biographies and photos of the remaining six horses are listed on the Web site at www.mnhoovedanimalrescue.org/toddcounty.html. (Editor's note: the photos on that Web site may be disturbing to some readers.)
Chief Deputy Tebben said Tuesday that he is still waiting for a report from a veterinarian to give to the Todd County Attorney's Office to use in pursuing charges. He expects if charges are filed, it will be by the end of the week. Whether they are misdemeanor or felony will be up to the county attorney, he said.
The owner of the horses could not be reached for