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Sheriff Seizes Horses During Saturday Morning Raid

web posted March 22, 2014  12:55 pm

TRENTON The Edgefield County Sheriff's Office executed a search warrant at the High View Horse Farm on 545 Van Road Saturday morning following a three month investigation of cruelty to animals. The investigation, which got underway in January, found 77 malnourished Arabian and Arabian mixed horses at the farm. A subsequent visit on March 11 found the same horses still at the location.

The raid got underway around 10 am Saturday with the help of Arabian Rescue Mission Inc. out of New Jersey. A local farm had been rented to take the horses to once they were seized. However, between March 11 and Saturday morning, the owner had removed 70 of the horses to unknown locations, leaving only seven behind.

The owner, Stephen Zukowski, 55, has been charged with ill treatment of animals and could face additional charges as the investigation continues.

The horses, when first inspected, were very malnourished and were being kept in unsanitary conditions. Sheriff's Lt. Randy Doran said the horses kept in one of the barns was about two feet deep of feces in the stalls.    

The remaining horses have been taken to the rented farm in Trenton where they will be cared for and nursed back to health.

Lt. Doran said if Zukowski tries to fight the charges he could face up to 77 counts, one for each horses observed and counted during the investigation. The owner did not tell law enforcement where the other 70 horses were, claiming he gave most of them away.

Edgefield Daily will continue to follow this breaking story as more information is made available.

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