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Cheetah

Horse shot in Todd County

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Cheetah

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21662412/

Quote:

By Paul Walsh / StarTribune

startribune.com

updated 11:30 p.m. CT, Tues., Nov. 6, 2007

The killing of a girl's horse in Todd County, at first thought to be a gruesome instance of animal abuse, is more likely a case of a deer hunter making a mistake, the Sheriff's Office said Tuesday.

The horse, Savannah, was discovered by 11-year-old Katie Symalla on Saturday afternoon on the family's Long Prairie, Minn., property. The horse's head had extensive cuts and an eyeball was missing, according to the Sheriff's Office.

Long Prairie is about 100 miles northwest of the Twin Cities.

Chief Deputy Bryan Tebben said his investigators are treating the animal's death as "a simple hunting accident" that probably occurred before dawn on Saturday, the opening day of the firearms deer-hunting season. Tebben stressed that he does not believe it was a case of deliberate mutilation.

He asked that anyone who was involved or has information call his office at 1-800-794-5733. Those involved could potentially be charged with damaging property, trying to cover up the incident or both.

Tebben said the horse had the "exact colors" and bore a "striking resemblance to a fat deer ... in the dark, anyway."

The cuts in the horse's head suggests to Tebben that whoever shot Savannah was looking for the bullet as a means to conceal the shooting and "not trying to mutilate the animal." He said the property is near hunting land. "We get animals mistaken [by hunters] for deer all the time," Tebben said.

"She was my best friend in the whole wide world," Katie told WCCO-TV. "I never wanted her to be lost."

PAUL WALSH


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uplander

They say one bad apple....... I'm tired of storries like this giving us hunters a bad name.......C-mon guys, QUIT SHOOTING AT NOISES AND SAPES AND COLORS AND MOVEMENT!!!!!!!! MAKE SURE OF YOUR TARGET!.....and then make sure again!!!nuf said frown.gif

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BobT

How do you mistake a 1200#, 5-6 foot tall horse for a 200# 3-1/2 foot tall deer? Someone doesn't belong holding a firearm if he can't tell the difference.

crazy.gif

Bob

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Dotch

No kidding. No excuses. None. No more hunting privileges for whoever did it and they should pay for the little girls horse, no exceptions. While there could be an agenda for publishing stories like these, every year it happens. Total crap.

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Deitz Dittrich

I wonder if there is somewhere to donate $$ to to buy the girl a new horse?.. Would be a nice action for hunters to take.

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Scott K

Yes good idea deitz, just imagine on the news, "Fishing MN" donates money to buy the girl a new horse grin.gif. You set it up, I am sure you will get enough of people on here to contribute.

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Shack

It sounds like the Uncle of the little girl is very sure it was not a hunter and this is definitely a mutilation case.

They are having a vet look at horse to see what caused its death.

Might not be a hunter at all!

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uplander

Let's hope not!!!

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Shack

Quote:


A man who lives next to the Todd County property where his niece's small horse was killed is challenging the suspicion of authorities that the death was due to a hunting accident.

A veterinarian today was scheduled to examine young Katie Symalla's horse, which was killed on the family's Long Prairie property on Saturday at the outset of firearms deer hunting season.

"Investigators will make every effort to determined the reason for the death of this animal," Chief Sheriff's Deputy Bryan Tebben said in a news release.

The horse, Savannah, was discovered by Katie. Its head was cut extensively and an eyeball was missing, the Sheriff's Office said.

Tebben said Tuesday that his investigators are treating the animal's death as "a simple hunting accident" that occurred mostly likely before dawn on the opening day of firearm deer hunting season.

The cuts in the horse's head suggested to Tebben that whoever shot Savannah was looking for the bullet in order to conceal the shooting and "not trying to mutilate the animal." He added that the property is near hunting land. "We get animals mistaken [by hunters] for deer all the time," Tebben said.

However, Katie's uncle said in interview today that "this is definitely a mutilation case."

Alonzo Symalla, who lives next to the property where the horse was killed, said he has seen photos of the horse's skull that were taken by Katie's mother, Veronica Monti.

He said that most of the flesh on the skull and the hide were removed and not left at the scene. He contends that such extensive cutting on the horse's head would not be needed to search for a bullet, had the animal been shot.

"I don't see cutting off half the face ... to find a bullet," he said. "It doesn't make any sense."

Symalla, a hunter, also doubted that any hunter in the area could get close enough to the small pen where Savannah was kept in order to get a clear shot.

Authorities have yet to determine who killed Savannah. Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact the Sheriff's Office at 1-320-732-2157 or 1-800-794-5733.

Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482


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JDM

I am very bothered that the person who did this calls themselves a hunter in the same fashion that I do for myself. I hope they catch this person, make them buy her a new horse, make him apologize in person for killing and mutilating that little girl's horse, and then revoke his or her hunting rights for a couple of years. This person should also have to take a firearms safety course and go get their eyes checked. As others have stated on this thread, I just don't understand how someone can mistake a horse for a deer.

My guess is that they were shining deer at night, saw the eyes, shot at the eyes, and hit the horse in the head. If my guess is correct, these poachers need to be prosecuted.

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shogun

Quote:

"We get animals mistaken [by hunters] for deer all the time," Tebben said.


This should not be happening, these 'hunters' should not be hunting. Like JDM said, if they are finding hunters that are mistaking anything for deer, they need to make them take a hunters safety class before being allowed to hunt again, if already done, then take away their hunting privileges, guns, and ability to buy guns ever again. Might as well have been a person mistaken for a deer.

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tealitup

I'll donate to help the girl out if someone starts the process. FM directly? heck, I'll start it if I knew there would be enough to buy a horse - I would hate to take money and then not have enough and then give all the money back

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mrwalleye_13

The only words that come to my mouth are "W-T-F!!?" There is just no excuse that this horse was killed... believe me horses have no sentimental value to me and I don't even like them... but really do horses and deer look alike? Don't call yourself a hunter if you cant pick out a horse from a deer I dont even care what the circumstances are because if it was that hard to see the difference... that person should stop smokin up or hunting drunk... that is all..

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Hammer Handle

Many years ago...I know of someone that shot a black and white Holstein cow thinking it was a deer.

Take away their hunting privileges, PLEASE!

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MNRookie78

Quote:

I'll donate to help the girl out if someone starts the process. FM directly? heck, I'll start it if I knew there would be enough to buy a horse - I would hate to take money and then not have enough and then give all the money back


For the sake of hunters and sportsman in general..I'd be in to donate a few dollars. Horses are not cheap! Anyone here know how to start a fund for this type of thing?

I hope the authorities find out who did this or they come clean themselves!

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brittman

No bullet wound. Horse was missing blood believed to be carried away... confused.gif

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Shack

In some little light, it rules out a hunter. This is still a very bad thing and I feel for the young little girl.

It sounds like it was man made cuts and why (maybe I do not want to know) would someone do this.

Buy there own horse or go to large horse farm. Poor little girl.

I would be a fellow FM'er to throw a couple bucks her way if she needed it.

All I can think of is this nice palomino coming over to someone, looking for affection and finding out pain mad.gif.

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TroyMcClure

I for one would donate to the cause and help this little girl out. Regardless of whether or not it was killed by a hunter, it would be good PR for hunters that know what a deer looks like and don't shoot in the dark.

I am new to the hunting and fishing scene, but I pride myself on C&R and respectful hunting.

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Scott M

Kind of glad it wasn't a hunting "accident" but it was still an extreme act of cruelty. Right out of the book from the guy that sent that teenager her dog's head in the mail. There are some sick people out there. This isn't "The Godfather". This little girl didn't do anything to anyone, nor did the family.

What a world we live in.

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iffwalleyes

I just heard about this tonight from my mom. I grew up in this area. I don't personally know that people who own the horse but it is a terrible thing that is for sure. Hard to say what the reasoning for it was at this point.

My thoughts are it was aliens grin.gif.

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Scott K

I see someone in her local area bought her a new horse, that was a really nice thing to do. It wont replace the one she has or make her forget about it, but now she has a new friend.

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Bushwacker

Quote:

I see someone in her local area bought her a new horse, that was a really nice thing to do. It wont replace the one she has or make her forget about it, but now she has a new friend.


The generosity of others came forth as news spread that a Todd County girl's beloved pony was mutilated and killed in a pasture outside her home.

Katie Symalla will have a new pony Saturday, thanks to a fellow Long Prairie resident who stepped up to help the girl heal from the loss of her dear Savannah.

"That's seven now," Katie’s mother, Veronica Monti said, when told Thursday night of an offer a new horse from a woman in Worthington, Minn. Other offers came from elsewhere in Minnesota and as far away as Ohio, Monti said.

"There are so many people who know about this," Monti said in an interview. "Please tell everyone how thankful we are and heartwarming all of this is."

Monti picks up the new horse, age 7 months, Saturday. Since Savannah's death, Monti said that Katie has needed counseling and has missed some school.

Thursday, the Humane Society of the United States today put up a $2,500 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of anyone responsible for the mutilation.

Wednesday, the animal was exhumed for a veterinarian's examination, which found that the palomino wasn't killed in a hunting accident, as authorities first suspected.

Katie found Savannah dead on the family's Long Prairie property last Saturday. It appears someone used a sharp instrument to remove all the soft tissue on the left side of the head, including the lip, nostril and ear flap, said veterinarian Dr. Charles Moberg.

Investigators said they are looking for a small white pickup that was seen in the area last Saturday morning. Anyone with information about the crime should call Todd County Chief Deputy Bryan Tebben at 1-320-732-2157 or 1-800-794-5733.

Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482

************************************************************

That is great that so many caring people stepped up.

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tealitup

It turned out that the horse died of natural causes and then was partial eaten by wild animals!

Hum' you think PETA or some other news organization ran with this story too fast.

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snowman678

Quote:

It turned out that the horse died of natural causes and then was partial eaten by wild animals!

Hum' you think PETA or some other news organization ran with this story too fast.


Yep, along with a whole bunch of people on this board. confused.gif

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