Authorities working to remove neglected horses from Chickasaw Co. - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Authorities working to remove neglected horses from Chickasaw Co.


CHICKASAW CO. (KWWL)--- The investigation continues into the alleged abuse and neglect of 18 horses in Chickasaw County. 

Horses inside this rural Fredericksburg barn chomp on some hay.  Since the horses were rescued Sunday…this is likely the only food they've eaten in several month.  Six horses have died and a dozen more are in very poor health.  It's the result of suspected animal abuse and neglect.

"A lot of frustration is coming from the smell and the treatment and neglect of the horses," said Justin Gerleman.

Justin Gerleman and his family live on the property next to where these horses have been kept.  They were concerned about the condition of the animals and notified police.  And the man who owned these horses was no stranger to the authorities, who've been trying to monitor him.

"From what I know this guy moves around, and we depend on citizen reports. I didn't know these animals were there until we did receive a call on it," said Chickasaw Co. Sheriff Marty Larsen.

While people who live here are glad action is being taken now, they're frustrated that the horses have not been removed from the property.

"It's been a very ridiculous timely manner in getting these horses some help and safety.  You know they're dying every day, and pretty soon, there's going to be none left---only carcasses laying around here," Gerleman said.

Authorities say they're doing the best they can, but need help in transporting the horses to a safe location.  At the soonest, the animals could be removed Tuesday.

"They're going to be taken to a dry lot and experts that work with horse rescue are going to be working with them," said Sheriff Larsen.

And with any luck, no more of these horses will die before that happens.

The owner of the horses has not yet been criminally charged in this case, but he has been served an eviction notice by the property owners and isn't allowed to come into contact with the animals.

KWWL Reporter: Kera Mashek

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