For horse lovers, this is one of the most unimaginable hellish scenarios imaginable. And, even if you’re not particularly fond of horses, as long as you possess a heart, this story will stir your emotions. For those seeking justice for the surviving horses in this case, one suspected to be Dual Peppy 1992 AQHA sorrel stallion (NRCHA/NCHA /NRHA SIRE), life is increasingly more frustrating each passing day.
You see, there are horses on the property that are not only still alive, but in desperate need of food, water and hoof care. These horses are sick, they are skinny and many stand on painful feet from lack of farrier care. The rest of the dozen or so horses on the property? Dead, rotting corpses and some only bones, piled under tarps within the barn, a mass grave for those who starved to death and were left there. A few of the remaining horses trapped within the barn to walk on the skeletal remains of their former herd mates.
It all began on Friday, September 19th 2014. Diana Ragula of Black Forest, CO went into her neighbor’s barn to retrieve her run away dog. What she found was appalling. “We just walked into a graveyard over here,” she says to the news crew she called in after dispatching the sheriff’s department, as she uncovers tarp after tarp from the floor of her neighbor’s large barn. Underneath; more than a dozen carcasses of dead horses in various stages of decay, some only skeletons. A broken water tank, empty, set on top of yet another tarp-covered deceased horse.
As she continues to uncover the bodies, Ms. Ragula says, “I’m pissed. I’m pretty mad. And these people just don’t seem to care about anything.” She goes in through a gate where living horses reside. There is no water, no hay, no food of any kind, anywhere in sight. “If I’d known about this before,” says Ragula, “I’d have been down here before.” Once El Paso County deputies arrived, the place was roped off to everyone but the owner and dubbed a crime scene.
A web site belonging to the horse’s owners offers “Cutting Horses for Sale.” Four of the living horses were inside the barn, walking around the bodies of the dead horses, living in manure “three to four feet high,” said Ragula.
Today, nothing has been done to date as for getting the remaining horses off the property. According to the El Paso County Sheriff’s Department, officers, some mounted, are working with the owner, Sherri Brunzel, to give the horses the food and water they require. In the meantime, some of the horses stand on painfully foundered feet, a condition that without timely interaction and much care, can become deadly quickly.
Horse lovers country-wide are fuming. They want the remaining 8 horses removed from the property, the owner not just cited, but persecuted. However, horse lovers everywhere wonder, do these animals have the proper food? Have they seen a vet, a farrier? So far as anyone knows, the Sheriff’s Dept has made it appear as if the owner will be allowed to keep the remaining 8 horses, hardly due justice to the dozens that were allowed to suffer and die! And what happens when the Sheriff’s Dept stops their aid? Do these horses as well eventually join the ranks of those poor souls who suffered in silence, died in silence and were shamefully disgraced, covered and forgotten? Another concern from horse lovers; Colorado laws regarding horse abuse and neglect, which are seriously lacking in 21st century justice. And justice is what the people want. For who can say it is acceptable to allow dozens of innocent horses to simply die
These are the concerns of those who began and support the Facebook page, Justice for Dual Peppy. On this site you will find contact phone numbers to people you can call for aid, information as it comes in and ways to perhaps help Colorado change its laws and see that horses are feeling creatures that deserve to be treated with fairness and dignity.
Another Video Link Describing what happened.
Below are a few contact numbers:
NCHA Colorado Directors:
Robert Tregemba (email) Castle Rock CO 303-946-7168
Steven W Norris (email) Colorado Spgs CO 719-227-9722
Ronald Pietrafeso (email) Elbert CO 303-880-5609
Nathan Miller (email) Mc Clave CO 719-688-8173
Update from Diana Ragula:
UPDATE ON HORSES …NO ONE OTHER THAN THE OWNERS HAVE BEEN AT THE BARN.I CALLED THE F.B.I. AND SPOKE TO AGENT 9028-HE STATED THAT THIS IS NOT AN FBI MATTER AND TOLD ME TO CALL THE STATE ATTORNEY GENERAL 720 508 6000. MON-FRI. AND CNN’S NUMBER IS 404 827 1500