Horse writhes in pain as ruthless owners tie and drag him behind moving truck in Colorado
John Saldate, 59, and Amber Rose Saldate, 33, were charged Monday with class one misdemeanor under Colorado Law
WARNING: DISTURBING CONTENT
GRAND COUNTY, COLORADO: A distressing video of a horse being ruthlessly dragged behind a pick-up truck has led to charges of animal cruelty being filed against a Colorado couple.
Observers were shocked after the video emerged on Sunday, November 24, showing Trigger, the horse, being pulled at least 100 yards in the snow against his will. The video eventually led to John Saldate, 59, and Amber Rose Saldate, 33, being charged Monday with class one misdemeanor under Colorado Law.
"This a**hole refuses to leave the ranch, so John's pulling him across because he's being a douchebag," a woman, possibly Amber Saldate, is heard narrating the disturbing footage.
The video was shared on Facebook by animal lover Allison Richards, who categorically stated she wasn't present at the time of incident nor was she friends with the horse's owners.
By Tuesday, the clip had been viewed nearly 40,000 times. Outraged viewers subsequently requested police to investigate the incident and bring the owners to justice.
An animal cruelty probe was initiated by the Grand County Sheriff's Office near Grand Lake. Meanwhile, the Grand County Animal Control, Colorado Human Society and 14th Judicial District Attorney's Office assisted the investigation.
While the horse in question has been seized by law enforcement and is now in safe hands, two other horses have reportedly been left at the ranch itself.
Amber spoke to CBS4 on Monday but asked not to be pictured. "You make one bad decision sometimes and it can destroy your life," she told the outlet. "I've lost my job over this, I've upset a lot of people. I made our horse go through something that he shouldn't have. I was wrong."
Grand County Sheriff Brett Schroetlin tried to calm animal lovers who were outraged at the incident.
"Cases involving kids and animals are obviously very emotional," Sheriff Schroetlin told CBS4 Monday. "We need to do our part of the investigation which sometimes takes a little bit longer than what the community is hoping."
Nonetheless, the pair were officially charged Tuesday afternoon and are now scheduled to appear in County Court in Hot Sulphur Springs late January.