A Henderson man turned himself into deputies on Tuesday after investigators found emaciated horses on his property, following a missing horses report filed by the suspect.
According to Rusk County Sheriff Jeff Price, officials arrested Larry Antone “Tony” Cadwell, 50, for animal cruelty.
“we have some horses that are in poor shape,” Price said, explaining the conditions of the horses confiscated.
Price said Cadwell filed a report for two missing horses on Saturday. On Monday, investigators went to his property and found 21 horses, all in bad shape, some worse than others. Authorities believe all the horses have parasites because of bad pond water, their only drinking source. The horses also appeared to be bloated, Rusk County Animal Control stated. There was also no grass to feed on in the area, and the animals were forced to eat leaves from trees.
Officials obtained an order to seize the horses on Tuesday morning.
“Animal Control went out there, looked the situation over, and they went ahead and got a seizure order to seize the animals,” Price said.
Deputies went to the property on FM 1251 and took control of the animals in the afternoon. Authorities could not give an exact location, but did state the property is located about two miles from the Panola County line.
During the seizure, authorities found and seized 23 horses, including the two reported missing.
“When we went out there to seize the 21 horses, we discovered there were now 23 horses, on the property. The two reported stolen horses were with the other 21 horses now,” Price said.
A veterinarian will inspect the horses and give an opinion on their condition, which is expected to be complete on Wednesday some time. Rusk County animal control said they believe the horses will be confiscated and turned over to sanctuaries following the veterinarian inspection.
Cadwell was released on Wednesday on $2,500 bond. He could face additional charges following the veterinarian’s inspection.
Rusk County says there is a lesson to be learned here.
“There are ways that you can resolve this,” Price said. “You can sell the animal, you can get rid of the animal. Do something to benefit the animal that’s not going to put you in a bind or put that animal in harm.”
KETK will have more on this report in the 5 and 6 p.m. newscasts.