CARUTHERSVILLE -- A nine-month investigation into animal abuse ended Friday when search warrants were served. However, the rescue wasn't in time for at least three of the animals, which died before investigators arrived on the scene.
According to a Pemiscot County Sheriff Tommy Greenwell, Pemiscot County deputies and officials with the Caruthersville Humane Society executed the warrants Friday morning at property located on County Road 538. Eight horses were seized from the property and transported to an undisclosed location where they will be held until a disposition hearing in the circuit court.
"During the course of this investigation three horses had died prior to the search warrant due to malnutrition and their medical condition," Greenwell stated in a news release. Greenwell said the horses were not receiving the nutrients needed and were eating pieces of wood on the property and drinking "mudded rain water." Also the sheriff pointed out the horses had limited protection from the weather.
Friday afternoon another search warrant was executed at a residence in Caruthersville in connection with the previous investigation.
"While investigating officers were preparing to make entry it was determined that animal feces could be smelled while investigators were standing in the street," Greenwell said.
Upon entry officers found dogs both caged and running lose in the residence. Many of the cages were too small for the animals they were holding, the sheriff stated.
Some 23 dogs were seized from the occupied residence.
Conditions were unsanitary for animals and humans living in the residence along with those who live in the general area, Greenwell said.
"It was noted that in places inside the residence that anywhere from two inches to almost a foot of animal feces was piled on the floor throughout the house," according to Greenwell.
Officers turned their findings over to the Caruthersville Code Enforcement. No charges have been filed as of this time in connection with either incident, authorities said.