(this post written by Darci Hortness and does not necessarily represent the opinions of anyone else.)
Recently I've been asked by several people about the race horses that reportedly starved to death near Aberdeen, South Dakota. It was in all the newspapers in Nov/Dec. And everyone wants to know what happened or what is happening.
Remember this story? http://www.keloland.com/newsdetail.cfm/authorities-investigate-starving-horses/?id=140896
there had already been a month-long investigation in early Dec.
finally, after getting tired of telling everyone "I don't know," I emailed the Aberdeen Mayor. (A long time ago, for just a couple of years, I lived in Aberdeen; and I knew him through the job that I had there. He wasn't the mayor then though.) He replied that he didn't know anything about it but gave me the Sheriff's phone number. (kind of funny though, the number he gave me was disconnected, just the wrong prefix). The Sheriff's dept said they can't tell me anything. it's all in the States Attys hands. So they gave me that number. I talked to a woman there. They cannot tell us anything. "It's still being looked at." I asked if there had been any charges of inhumane treatment, since some of the horses did die. She couldn't tell me. Any civil charges? she didn't know; they don't handle that. (a reliable source with some access to court records told me there may have been civil charges, though I haven't heard any more on that either). I asked if we could get the name of the trainer being investigated; we sure don't want to send horses that way if, indeed, the trainer is responsible for the reported starvation. (Actually, I have been given the name, but not officially so I will not include it here.) Nope. Can't give us that either. So I asked if there is a date set for anything. Nope. nothing going on except "it's still being looked at."
So, there you have it. After nearly 3 months, "it's still being looked at."
That's a pretty good look!
I spose if anyone has one of those accounts where you can look up public records you might be able to find something if, indeed, there is something going on that would be public knowledge. Maybe, for example, if you google horse racing aberdeen south dakota trainer jockey or something like that. And then try some of those names in the public records, ???
I will say that everyone I communicated with was very friendly. Very hush-hush, but very friendly.
Now, compare this to the recent horse neglect case in Pennington County. While that had been going on for a very long time as well, when the big thing happened, the public information was there for us.
No rumors being spread there.
Really, can we just call it what it is! Dead horses. Starvation had already been reported. What are they still looking at nearly 3 months later? the pictures of the dead horses?
Feb. 25, 2013. update: of course there is more to this story now. Robert Haar was named the neglectful trainer. his granny has the horses now. nice they could stay in the family, eh?