Sheriff's Posse seeking donations to help care for abandoned or seized horses
The Yuma County Sheriff's Posse (a local nonprofit organization) is looking for donations to help with caring for abandoned or seized horses as a result of animal neglect cases.
Lt. Darren Simmons explained that normally the Arizona Department of Agriculture would investigate these types of cases, but due to the cutback in livestock officers, that responsibility has now fallen the Sheriff's Office.
While it is not an everyday occurrence, Simmons said the sheriff's office has unfortunately seen an increase in equine neglect cases in recent years.
Simmons also said that the sheriff's office does not have the ability to store or care for these animals so it relies heavily on the sheriff's posse to come out and pick up the horses and care for them until hearings can be held in the abuse cases or the owners of lost livestock can be found.
“We don't keep them. We are kind of the in-between for the state livestock officer, the courts and owners,” Simmons explained. “We just don't have all the necessities we need to properly take care of them.”
While the sheriff's posse does not have any dedicated land to accommodate the storage of these found or neglected horses, Simmons said a local family has donated them about three acres of land to use, where they have set up temporary corrals and shade structures.
As a result, the sheriff's posse is reaching out to the community for assistance. It's looking for portable horse panels, corrals and shade structures that can be erected at this temporary location.
If you have any of these items and you would like to donate them, please contact the Yuma County Sheriff's Office at (928) 783-4427 or Sgt. Eric Driedger of the Sheriff's Posse at (928) 210-4230.
James Gilbert can be reached at email@example.com or 539-6854. Find him on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/YSJamesGilbert or on Twitter @YSJamesGilbert.