Investigation Continues Into Alleged Horse Abuse At Texas Cutting

Investigators on Friday, Aug. 11, continued to probe allegations a horse was shot with a BB gun at a National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA)-sanctioned event in Texas.
The alleged incident happened on July 15 at a cutting near Whitesboro.

The Grayson County (Texas) Sheriff’s Department and SPCA of Texas, a Dallas-based animal-welfare agency, are conducting a joint investigation into the accusations. A separate investigation is underway through the NCHA.

Grayson County Sheriff’s Lt. Sarah Bigham said one of the department’s animal cruelty investigators continues to work on the case.

She said the agency has received a video of the incident, but would not release any details of it or any other aspects of the investigation, citing the ongoing nature of the case.

A cell phone video, purportedly of the incident, was shown to a Quarter Horse News staff member and shows a man walking next to a horse with his lower arms covered in a jacket. There is a popping noise and the horse, which was tied to a wall, jerks back. Someone off camera yells at the man, asking if he felt it was necessary to shoot the animal with a BB gun.

A second video shows the man drop something from the jacket. He quickly picked the item up and slid it back underneath the jacket.
It is not known if the videos shown to Quarter Horse News are the same being evaluated by sheriff’s deputies. The NCHA has not commented on the videos shown to Quarter Horse News.

NCHA President Chuck Smith said the incident remains under investigation by the NCHA grievance committee, per association policies.

“It’s ongoing,” he said.

The incident was initially reported to NCHA by the Muenster Cutting Horse Association, an association affiliate running the July 15 event. In addition to launching an investigation, the NCHA also notified the Grayson County Attorney’s Office of the allegations. Per policy, prosecutors sent the case to Grayson County sheriff’s deputies.

The SPCA of Texas, which received an anonymous complaint a horse was shot by its owner, is working with the Grayson County Sheriff’s Office on the case.