Oklahoma Veteran Finds Out Horse Died In Care Of 'Rescue' Ranch
CREEK COUNTY, Oklahoma - Eight horses have been taken away from a woman who claimed to be running an equine boarding ranch and rescue. Creek County deputies said they found several dead horses on the woman's property.
The sign is no longer hanging on the fence, but the woman who was running that rescue has been charged with animal cruelty.
Twisted Whiskers Ranch Equine Rescue once operated, now This is the first time Todd Jones ever saddled up his horse, C.W. Royal Jess, or Jesse Boy for short.
“I could sit down and talk to him, even though he's a horse, but he understands,” Todd said. “He was just a companion, I guess you could say. A good one."
Companionship is why Todd got Jesse Boy in the first place.
The horse came into his life in 2011, not long after Todd came home from serving in Iraq -- a war that he said left him with a traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress.
Jesse Boy became Todd's therapy.
“Most of my coming back to normal is my animals because I can tell them stuff that I can't tell anyone else,” he said.
Todd and his wife, Angela, moved to a new place last April that couldn't house Jesse Boy.
That's when they found Kerri Abram, who we found on Facebook with a different last name claiming to be the owner of Twisted Whiskers Ranch in Bristow.
The couple said they paid Abram between $200 and $500 a month to care for their horse.
The agreement, they said, went well until the past few months.
Angela said Abram told her she moved to a new place and brought Jesse Boy with her.
“We went out three times recently to get our horse and we could find it; there was no signs of him,” Anglea said. “She said, 'Oh, well it's a large property, he's down somewhere, when he comes back up, I'll let you know.'”
She added, "We kept waiting and waiting. We kept messaging her, she kept avoiding us."
They never saw their horse again.
"She never did tell us, she just let him die," Todd said.
"She actually contacted me yesterday morning and she admitted to me that our horse had died in November," Angela said. "She's been collecting money and stuff from us ever since, for his care, acting like he's fine."
According to court records, a Creek County Sheriff's deputy found five dead horses on the property where Abram was running the rescue.
The documents say eight other severely malnourished horses were seized.
The probable cause affidavit says Abram told a deputy the horses died of old age.
The couple said Abram told them their horse died from complications from an abscess tooth.
“He could have been vetted, this could have been fixed, this is something that should have never, ever happened,” Angela said. “We would have paid for him to get care he needed.”
The couple said they have now filed a fraud complaint with the sheriff's office, which deputies say they're looking into.
Deputies said they're also monitoring closely several horses that are being kept on the land where Abram is reportedly staying now.
According to the IRS, Twisted Whiskers Ranch Equine Rescue is not a registered non-profit group.