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Minn. Farmer ‘Shocked’ After Horses Put Down By State Patrol
WCCO-4 ^ | 5/9/13 | Heather Brown

Posted on 05/09/2013 8:00:01 PM PDT by Huntress

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minnesota State Patrol had to put down two horses after they got away from their Faribault farm early Monday morning. They’d been trying to get the horses back onto their property when they say the situation just became too unsafe. But, as can be imagined, the horses’ owner is very upset — and has to foot the bill.

Suzette Clemens didn’t even realize her quarter horses, Roper and Frenchie, had escaped when a tree fell on her electric fence, until a Rice County deputy showed up at her door in the middle of the night. He told her the horses had to be euthanized.

“I was shocked, shocked, you know,” she said. “They didn’t even spend more than 19 minutes trying to catch them.”

Around 2 a.m. Monday, the horses made it to Interstate 35 near Mile Marker 55 in Faribault, a couple hundred yards from Clemens’ home. When Rice County Deputy Jason Witt first arrived, minutes after the call, he said one horse was on the side of the road and the other was on the freeway. He said once a State Trooper arrived, they unsuccessfully tried to get the 1,100-pound animals back over a 5-foot-high fence. Witt said there were some near-misses with trucks when the horses crossed into the lanes of traffic.

“It was chaotic, I guess, that’s the best way to describe it,” Witt said.

Witt said the brown horses were hard to see in the dark and got more and more agitated as the minutes went on. At one point, one of the horses kicked his squad after the noise of a semi slamming its brakes.

“It’s obviously a situation that we recognize will be tragic for the owners of the horses,” said Lt. Eric Roeske of the Minnesota State Patrol. “It’s not something we take lightly, but at 2 in the morning, in the dark, it’s really just a matter of time before something happens that ends in death or injury to a motorist.”

As for using a tranquilizer on the large animals, Roekse said, “We’re not vets, we don’t have the capability to do that.”

Clemens questioned why troopers or deputies didn’t try to stop traffic.

“I’ve seen people stop traffic for a turkey on a highway, why didn’t they do that,” she asked. “Why didn’t they come get me. It just takes 10 minutes to walk here.”

Roeske said interstates are dangerous enough in the middle of the night. He recounted a story about a trooper hitting a horse last year and ending up seriously injured.

“We’ve seen firsthand how damaging and dangerous it can be,” he said. “At two o’clock in the morning, in the pitch dark, it becomes a very dangerous situation for everyone involved.”

About 20 minutes after the first call came in, the state trooper, along with the deputies present, decided it would be best to put the horses down. The trooper shot the horses with his rifle in the median.

“It’s a horrible, horrible thing,” said Clemens. “They’re part of your family. It isn’t like they’re a cow.”

According to the Minnesota Department of Transportation, Clemens will be held responsible for the removal of the horses in the median.

Clemens said she expects a bill sometime within the year and her insurance company will not be able to cover any of it.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events; US: Minnesota
KEYWORDS: cops; donutwatch; faribault; horses; minnesota
I'm not sure how I come out on this one. I feel for the farmer, because it doesn't sound like she was negligent. On the other hand, I would not have wanted to be driving a car in the dark on that interstate when there were horses running around on it. I damned sure wouldn't want to be the person trying to catch an unfamiliar, spooked horse on an interstate highway in the middle of night. I wonder how long it would have taken to stop traffic and then catch the horses?
1 posted on 05/09/2013 8:00:01 PM PDT by Huntress
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To: Huntress

Hey, they’d been practicing by shooting dogs!


2 posted on 05/09/2013 8:04:19 PM PDT by jjotto ("Ya could look it up!")
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To: Huntress

Ditto.

I have horses, and I love them dearly, but I can understand and accept that what the Troopers did was necessary.

They are a handful... and you can’t reason with them.

Sad story.


3 posted on 05/09/2013 8:10:02 PM PDT by WomBom ("I read Free Republic for the pictures")
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To: Huntress

The trooper and deputies were impatient morons. At two in the morning they could have closed the damn highway for an hour with no serious repercussions to anyone.

Instead of wasting 20 minutes endangering everyone with their ham handed attempts, they could have closed the road and located the owner in the same amount of time.

The owner just needed a bucked of grain, halters and lead ropes and they’d be back in the corral in ten minutes.

Instead, she has very expensive dog food rotting in the median.


4 posted on 05/09/2013 8:10:11 PM PDT by Valpal1
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To: WomBom; Huntress

My wife and daughter hit a black angus cow at night about ten years ago. Its head came through the windshield between them. They weren’t hurt but the cow didn’t make it. The cops had to shoot it. My daughter won’t eat red meat to this day.


5 posted on 05/09/2013 8:16:35 PM PDT by bigheadfred ( barry your mouth is writing checks your ass cant cash)
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To: Valpal1

If the police can’t solve a problem with brute force, they’ll find a way to solve the problem with brute force.


6 posted on 05/09/2013 8:18:24 PM PDT by RC one
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To: WomBom

Balderdash...you do not understand horses!


7 posted on 05/09/2013 8:22:08 PM PDT by GGpaX4DumpedTea
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To: RC one

Thank you for the excellent tagline. Common sense has become so rare, it is now a super power.


8 posted on 05/09/2013 8:23:24 PM PDT by Valpal1 (If the police canÂ’t solve a problem with brute force, theyÂ’ll find a way to fix it with brute forc)
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To: Huntress

Going with the cops on this one. Terrible tragedy for the horses and owner.


9 posted on 05/09/2013 8:25:07 PM PDT by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously, you won't live through it anyway)
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To: RC one

true dat


10 posted on 05/09/2013 8:31:45 PM PDT by bigheadfred ( barry your mouth is writing checks your ass cant cash)
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To: RC one
If the police can’t solve a problem with brute force, they’ll find a way to solve the problem with brute force.

Bears repeating.

11 posted on 05/09/2013 8:37:21 PM PDT by mvpel (Michael Pelletier)
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To: Vendome

I would have thought it was mandatory to stop all traffic on the Iinterstate highway BEFORE attempting to corral the horses no matter what the final outcome was. It would seem the failure to shutdown the traffic flow immediately upon arrival at the scene endangered the motorists and the horses.


12 posted on 05/09/2013 8:42:22 PM PDT by WhiskeyX (The answer is very simple and easy to understand economics. The U.S. Treasury is printing vast)
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To: WomBom
They are a handful... and you can’t reason with them.

Horses or troopers?

13 posted on 05/09/2013 8:45:41 PM PDT by NonValueAdded (3 guns when you only have one arm? "I just don't want to get killed for lack of shooting back")
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To: Huntress

All cops are perfect. There cannot possibly be a circumstance where a cop is the problem waiting for a solution.


14 posted on 05/09/2013 8:50:39 PM PDT by Born to Conserve
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To: WhiskeyX

ditto - does this mean that it is open season on deer, elk, moose or any other large animal on the highway? Try the “endangering traffic” excuse with the game warden and see how far it gets you. Cop demonstrated no sense and an itchy finger.


15 posted on 05/09/2013 8:50:56 PM PDT by redlegplanner ( No Representation without Taxation)
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To: Huntress

[[They’d been trying to get the horses back onto their property when they say the situation just became too unsafe.]]

Became unsafe? Ya mean fer the horses? obviously so I guess-


16 posted on 05/09/2013 8:56:48 PM PDT by CottShop (Scientific belief does not constitute scientific evidence, nor does it convey scientific knowledge)
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To: WomBom

People in rural Alaska still turn horses out for the winter. I’ve seen that across Canada also. Nobody I know would shoot horses along a highway, unless they had never been outside urban America and never had the common sense to deal with situations many people see all the time. My friends don’t shoot everything that gets outta place.


17 posted on 05/09/2013 8:57:24 PM PDT by Eska
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To: bigheadfred
My daughter won’t eat red meat to this day.

Previous to that event, where did she think red meat came from?

And she is OK with eating chicken meat?

18 posted on 05/09/2013 9:13:43 PM PDT by Bloody Sam Roberts (For me, I plan to die standing as a free man rather than spend one second on my knees as a slave.)
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To: Eska

where I live the sheriff has contracted local rodeo cowboys on call, who come immediately and rustle them up loose cows or horses.


19 posted on 05/09/2013 9:17:20 PM PDT by Undecided 2012
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To: WhiskeyX

Good point.


20 posted on 05/09/2013 9:21:00 PM PDT by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously, you won't live through it anyway)
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To: Huntress

wonder how long it would have taken them to go get the owner to help roundup her horses????


21 posted on 05/09/2013 9:53:38 PM PDT by markman46 (engage brain before using keyboard!!!)
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To: Undecided 2012
A few years back there was this Equine rescue group that was stealing loose horses my neighbors owned. These horses strayed maybe a mile from the neighbors place and never caused any real damage. Neighbor lost one during hunting season one year, but bears never seemed to get any of the horses. One day here comes this horse trailer down our dirt road. The Equine Rescue place was run by this goofy lady. She paid this young guy to go out and pick up the horses. The horses were hauled over to Canada for dog food I heard. That lady was making money hiding behind the rescue group and getting all the vet papers for the border and everything. One day, my neigfbors wife called all frantic (they were Indians, so you can just imagine). I told her I saw the trailer and State Police called me and I told them and all. They caught the guy on his way to Canada. The lady from the Equine REscue got in all kinds of trouble and had been there before. She wasn't allowed to have involvement with any horses or Equine Rescue groups ever again, part of her probation and fines, ha ha. My neighbors still turn out their horses for the winter and they always come back half starved but OK. Takes all kinds I guess.

Loose horses don't bother me, urban people that can't drive do. Maybe it be OK if I start shooting all the dangerous drivers I see on the road when I go into Anchorage, ha ha.

22 posted on 05/09/2013 10:18:51 PM PDT by Eska
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To: jjotto

They shoot horses, don’t they?


23 posted on 05/09/2013 10:30:10 PM PDT by 353FMG ( I do not say whether I am serious or sarcastic -- I respect FReepers too much.)
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To: Huntress

YUM!

24 posted on 05/09/2013 10:40:54 PM PDT by Rodamala
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To: Huntress

common knowledge.

A bucket ( of most any kind ) and a little feed ( corn ) of some kind and the horses will follow you through fires of hell.

just saying..


25 posted on 05/10/2013 1:12:22 AM PDT by riverss
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To: Huntress

Looks like they’re not just shooting the family dog anymore....


26 posted on 05/10/2013 4:21:59 AM PDT by Jack Hammer (American)
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To: Huntress

Where I come out is that if law enforcement is incompetent in handling livestock then they have an obligation to call in someone who is before getting trigger happy.

The department should be held liable, officers repremanded, and new procedures written for dispatch so they have someone to call in at anytime.

Call me old school.


27 posted on 05/10/2013 4:26:07 AM PDT by MrEdd (Heck? Geewhiz Cripes, thats the place where people who don't believe in Gosh think they aint going.)
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To: Huntress

I actually have had to handle a horse situation before.....its not difficult

Horses are smart animals....and if corralled for any period of time...they will return to their home if they get loose

We had a horse wander on our school property a few times. He would hop his owners fence and walk to 7/11. Then walk back....2 mi round trip. The local sherrifs dept would get the call...and they just made sure he made it back home.

I guess the horse wanted some smokes and a Slurpee. I’m sure he got it for free...because that horse was as big as a Budwiser horse

These cops panicked...and panicked the horses. They should have closed the highway


28 posted on 05/10/2013 5:03:36 AM PDT by SeminoleCounty (GOP - Greenlighting Obama's Programs)
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To: Huntress

I’d wager the cops involved never handled horses before in their lives.


29 posted on 05/10/2013 5:46:45 AM PDT by Joe Brower (The "American People" are no longer capable of self-governance.)
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To: Huntress
These guys block off traffic at the drop of a hat. If they are worried about people seeing the danger, that's what those cars with the flashing lights on top are supposed to be for.

It would appear they've escalated from dogs to horses.

30 posted on 05/10/2013 6:46:16 AM PDT by zeugma (Those of us who work for a living are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.)
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To: GGpaX4DumpedTea

Hello FRiend!

This makes me soooooooooo mad. I just love horses, wish I could afford to have one.


31 posted on 05/10/2013 12:08:14 PM PDT by diamond6 (Lord, please have mercy on us!)
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To: riverss

Yep. A shame a little common sense wasn’t used.


32 posted on 05/14/2013 5:37:29 AM PDT by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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