Roxie Smith faces charges of animal cruelty, failure to give medical care, and failure to dispose of dead animals properly. Investigators were serving her an eviction notice when they noticed the two dead horses about two weeks ago. Smith tells WCIA she would never abuse animals. She says she was dealing with personal issues and she could not face the financial costs alone anymore. Animal rescuers say that's still no excuse, and say they would've helped if she just asked.
Linda Hewerdine rescued four of the horses on Smith's farm. She still has one, who says is suffering from a hernia, a sore on the leg, and a fever. On a scale from one to ten, with one being the worst, Babe, one of the rescued horses ranks one. Hewerdine says " I was aghast, it's just horrible when they do something like this." Describing Babe she says "she's nothing but ribs she shouldn't be sunk in like that", pointing to her stomach.
Douglas County Sheriff Charlie McGrew says the alleged abuse could have gone unnoticed. He says the barn where the horses were found was " hidden to the rear of the complex, so I'm not so sure this was real obvious to a lot of people." The County Vet says it's horrible what she saw at the horse farm.
Last year, WCIA three talked with Smith at her horse farm that was helping children heal with her horses.
Smith has yet to turn herself into the Sheriff's office. Investigators have been in touch with her, and believe she will turn herself in soon. If found guilty on the misdemeanor charges, Smith could face up to a year in jail or fines. Animal rescuers say they just want justice served, "I'll like to stop her from doing it again and again and again."