No charges to be filed in NM horse shooting case

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San Francisco Chronicle | April 13, 2013

images-32ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico man seen in an Internet video swearing at animal activists before shooting a horse in the head will not face any charges.

Chaves County District Attorney Janetta Hicks determined that while Tim Sappington showed poor judgment and insensitivity, his conduct did not violate state law.

Hicks outlines her decision in a letter to an investigator with the New Mexico Livestock Board.

She says Sappington’s use of the horsemeat and lack of suffering by the animal made it impossible to prosecute for extreme animal cruelty.

She explained that killing livestock for the production of food in according with accepted agricultural and animal husbandry practices are excluded from the animal cruelty statute.

Sappington is a former employee of Valley Meat Co., which has been seeking federal approval to convert its former cattle slaughter operation into a horse slaughterhouse.

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AUTHOR: Jerry Finch
11 Comments
  • Daryl

    the cruel seem to get away with it, I wonder if he did loose his job? Or are they just saying so? So now we have to stop the house being made in the house of horriors for the horses. So sorry the ass hole did not get more then fired.

    April 14, 2013
  • MorganG

    Had anyone in animal welfare advocacy issued such a threat we would have been labelled terrorists and arrested.
    I thought the same thing Daryl, wondering if he actually did lose his job or was just told to lay low for awhile. I’m sure if they ever did manage to open the horse slaughterhouse there he would be welcome back with open arms. This is just the sort of employee they seem to go for.

    April 14, 2013
  • janwindsong

    This DA has no business doing the people’s business. ShThis is a case of animal cruelty, but she is afraid to stand up for the intent of the law.

    April 14, 2013
  • If some one can simply shoot an animal on video why have laws aganist animal cruelty?? Poor judgment my eyeball. What is wrong with Janetta Hicks?? Who did he feed the horse meat to? I was under the impression that horse slaughter for consumption was banned.

    April 15, 2013
    • Sierra

      Take a close look at what’s going on with the TX prosecutor, his wife, and the assistant prosecutor, and then tell me why she won’t stand up to this guy. For those three people to be murdered execution style has just opened the door to our law enforcement not enforcing the law for fear of their lives and that of their families. It’s a sad, scary world we’re living in folks, and it ain’t gonna get any better.

      April 15, 2013
  • susie sansbury

    Surely there is crime here somewhere. I think this Hicks woman is full of pure unadulterated shit of her own kind. This backyard hick didn’t just out and out kill an innocent horse, HE MADE VERBAL THREATS TO US!! That is terrorism. And by the horrible video and his threatening words, he has damaged me. I can’t eat nor sleep, or concentrate at work because I can’t get these visions out of my mind and brain. They just will not go away. And I’m SURE I’m not the only person who has been affected like this. I am going to write a letter to this woman, and tell her exactly what I think. This is just too much. It’s just not right.

    April 15, 2013
  • Arlene

    Another miscarriage of Justice !!!!!! This is truly criminal ??????????????????????????

    April 15, 2013
    • Daryl

      I think this was planned, and knowing he could get away with it. But loosing his job well that was for all the bad news he brought on his company, but the a holes who do this stuff, know how far they can go with it and stay under the law with out going to jail. They got more then they thought, we as horse lovers came out in groves.

      April 15, 2013
  • Judy Wendt

    Did the District Attorney not see the tape? After being shot, that poor young horse was on the ground, still alive, but writhing in pain.

    Also by dedicating his “kill” to animal lovers throughout the nation, this individual committed a terroristic threat. Perhaps this is really a federal offense and could be prosecuted at that level.

    April 15, 2013
  • Debbie Tracy

    This seems to be the case every where in this country when it comes to animals being protected by our laws it just never happens, like no official wants to bother with it, WHY IS THAT??? This country really is in trouble and yes it keeps getting worse…. SAD, DISGUSTED, and VERY ANGRY!!! Let another animal abuser, killer, idiot get away with it they ALL are consistant that way aren’t they??

    April 15, 2013
    • Arlene

      You know did he REALLY GET AWAY WITH THIS?????? He has now presented himself as piece of human crap !!!!!! Would you hire him ???? Would you be his friend !!!!!! Would you ever respect him???????? Of course not, its a lonely world out there ~~~~~ for him……..Justice served………………

      April 16, 2013