Owner of dead, seized horses charged with cruelty

The owner of a Morgan horse farm outside of Harrisburg was charged with six counts of animal cruelty after authorities removed five horses from her property where another five are believed to have been found dead.

The Humane Society of Harrisburg Area filed charges Rebecca Roberts, owner of Shadowland Morgans and Sport Horses, where the agency seized five starving horses last week, according to WHTM-TV (which has pictures of the surviving horses here).

Five of the charges were for each of the emaciated horses found on her Palmyra farm and another count for a horse that died after Roberts was given a written warning last month.

The remains of what are believed to be four horses are so badly decomposed that necropsies cannot be performed to determine the cause of the deaths, Kaunas said.

Another 30 horses remain on the property and are being monitored, she said.

"The investigation is ongoing and we may be filing additional charges or removing additional horses," Kaunas told the Inquirer in an email this week.

She said the horses that were removed are in stable condition but "their body condition scores are so low their survival is not guaranteed."

Roberts, an attorney, bred and sold show-quality registered Morgans - a breed known as "the pride and product of America" that was developed more than two centuries ago in New England.

The American Morgan Horse Association said it was saddened by the news and would be monitoring the situation.

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