Imagine you have just moved into your new rental. Your dog gets loose and you take off chasing it. Your dog enters a barn and inside you find 8-12 DEAD HORSES. Along with several others suffering severe malnourishment. That happened to Denise Piper and Diana Ragula as they caught their dog. Thank god the sheriff has stepped in to investigate. How does an owner let it get that bad. Why didn’t they at least bury the bodies rather than let them rot in the barn. Apparently there were alpacas in there too. Piper also found four feet of fecal matter meaning these animals haven’t been adequately cared for in a long time. The horse were apparently boarded on the property by another individual, Sherri Brunzell. How did the owners not noticed this severe neglect? They say Brunzell wouldn’t let them see the horses or help with care but it is THEIR property. Certainly Brunzell wasn’t there all the time. They could have easily walked down to see how things were going. I wonder if she was even paying her board? Personally I feel if this sort of neglect happens on your property the owner should be head liable as well. There is no reason to turn a blind eye to what is going on in YOUR barn. At very least all those decomposing bodies had to have smelled terrible. How do you not notice and investigate THAT? Anyone associated with these horses should rot in hell.
UPDATE: This horse below IS Dual Peppy (sure doesn’t look like he did in his 1999 breeding ad) he made the owners $88,391 as a cutting horse and it still didn’t save him from horrific neglect. His offspring have made more than $689,000. Stud fee in 2009 was $2500 it had been as high as $3500 so he bad them a boatload of money in stud fees too. Breeding Contract link. In 2010 he was ranked 25th all time leading sire for reined cowhorses. He was ridden by Jason Clark. This horse has a record for pages it is devastating to see him in this condition and that dog probably saved his life. Not the people who showed him and campaigned him for years but a random loose dog. Thank god he is one of the live ones and hoping he can get the care he needs.
I am so glad that the women who found these horses are mad and willing to help get the remaining horses the care they need. I really hope they are not charged with trespassing as it clearly shows them on video going in an uncovering the dead bodies. Although I admit I would take the charge to help the horses and hopefully get justice. There was some talk on Facebook last night about a delay in getting to the surviving horses and all I can say to that is it sucks that law enforcement has to wait for proper channels in order to secure convictions. If law enforcement had busted in there without a warrant all evidence found could have been thrown out. Since this is going to be a huge animal cruelty case I get them trying to go through all proper channels. I just hope this morning the horses are getting the care they desperately need.
Looking up Sherri she registered the domain name Dualpeppy.com but it is not an active website. The horse is a champion cutting horse with over $88000 in lifetime earning. Would be interesting to know the connection and I will be working on that. I did find some old sale pages by a woman named Sherri Brunzell selling horses for $50000 plus. This person was based in the Colorado Springs area so the likelihood they are the same person is high. Is this a case of how the mighty have fallen? If these were high dollar cutting horses what happened to allow her to stave them to death closed up in a barn? If they potentially were valuable why weren’t at least some of them sold to pay for feed for the others?
I did find an archived page showing 10 mares available in 2013. http://web.archive.org/web/20121021045412/http://www.dualpeppy.com/HorsesForSale.htm
If the same Sherri Brunzell wrote this article it is clear she is well educated. http://www.allaboutcutting.com/PDF/Clones/Microsoft%20Word%20-%20Mitochondrial%20DNA.pdf
She is also an AQHA member and although it appears a stallion she was associated with is a National Cutting Horse champion she is not listed as a member anymore.
Here are a couple links to news stories. Fugly Blog will be watching this story very closely and will keep readers updated. Since the investigation is beginning I am sure more information will be coming.
WARNING THESE LINKS CONTAIN PICTURES THAT SOME COULD FIND DISTURBING!
UPDATE: The El Paso County Sheriff’s office released this press release:
There has been a great deal of outcry about the situation involving the horses in the Black Forest area. We recognize this to be an emotional issue for many citizens, and in light of that, the Sheriff’s Office would like to provide some additional facts about the case.
Friday, September 19, 2014, members of our Investigations Division and our Mounted Unit, skilled in the investigation of animal cruelty and neglect cases involving horses, responded to the property off of Burgess Road to conduct the initial investigation.
After our investigators arrived on scene, they determined that while the appearance of the animals was visually disturbing, none of the horses were in immediate danger and none of them had to be euthanized. As such, investigators had no legal right to seize the horses at that time. We are looking into the cause of death of the deceased animals.
Members of our Mounted Unit are in contact with the horse owner, who is cooperating and receptive to working on a plan of action for continuing care of the animals and improving their living conditions. They have been provided with fresh food and water, (which they had along along) and the owner is making arrangements to further clean up the property.
Rest assured, had any of the animals been in imminent jeopardy, they would have been removed from the location. The Sheriff’s Office has had to do that in previous instances and would not have hesitated in this case should it have been necessary. We have a number of large animal rescue groups we work with in those cases.
The Sheriff’s Office truly appreciates the outpouring of concern the citizens have shown in this case and will make use of the generous offers should they become necessary.
Sgt. Gregory White
El Paso County Sheriff’s Office
Public Information Officer/Legislative Liaison
This is unacceptable. If she had food and the ability to get water why wasn’t it done? the doesn’t deserve to have custody of the remaining horses. If they are going to be monitoring her I hope that means an officer out there everyday to make sure they are fed and watered. This better not turn into a case where they let her off because she is cooperating and promises to change this woman need to prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. There is no excuse for letting these animals suffer and then to just leave them to rot. I will be watching this very closely and will be updating as soon as I get information.