JACKSON HOLE, WYO – Sheriff Jim Whalen issued the following statement late today after his department received numerous phone calls and emails when the Buckrail story posted.
“Deputies…verified the horse had died. The owner of the horse was interviewed and cooperated fully with the deputies. The owner voluntarily surrendered the carcass for further examination and testing. A veterinarian collected blood, urine and tissue samples that will be sent to the Wyoming State Veterinary Laboratory for testing to determine a cause of death.”
Whalen also cautioned against coming to an emotional, reactionary conclusion based on relatively little evidence.
“A video of the incident has surfaced on social media and has generated a very emotional reaction. The sheriff’s office is aware of the video and has obtained a copy as evidence. While we agree the video elicits a strong emotional response and is difficult to watch, we must investigate the incident in an analytical, fact-based manner. If the sheriff’s office and the Teton County Attorney’s Office determine there is evidence of a crime, criminal charges will be pursued. Again, we understand the emotionally charged aspect of the incident, but request that only those with direct involvement or witness accounts contact us at this time. Handling these calls and emails takes important resources away from actively investigating the incident.”