A Rogers County man is charged with animal cruelty after investigators say he dragged a horse behind an all-terrain vehicle on his property.
Deputies say they take these cases very seriously and even have an expert on staff who deals with animal cruelty.
Deputies said when they arrived at 36-year-old John Spenser's home, the 14-year-old horse, Missy, was not in good shape; but thanks to an alert neighbor and investigators, she’s now recovering.
“The horse was still tied to the ATV, and had several abrasions and was sweating profusely, which would indicate severe strain on a horses system," said Major Coy Jenkins with the Rogers County Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies said a neighbor called Tuesday night after witnessing Spencer drag the horse behind his ATV on pasture land near his home.
She said the horse broke away but Spencer chased after it, tied it up again and continued dragging the horse after a number of falls.
She also said it wasn't the first time she witnessed him abusing animals on his property.
Missy and another horse were quickly taken away.
"As soon as the warrant was issued those horses were immediately turned over to a vet and taken to a rescue facility," Jenkins said.
Spencer admitted not being good at training horses and told investigators he was pulling the horse to train her to lead and didn't realize she fell.
While on the property, investigators said they found a second horse with similar wounds that had scarred over. Soon after, deputies arrested Spencer for animal cruelty, a felony.
Jenkins said, "Rogers County Sheriff’s Office is very progressive, and unlike other sheriff’s offices, we have a particular unit that trains and handles these situations as they occur."
Spencer bonded out of jail Wednesday, and when we tried to speak with him Tuesday he took off.
Deputies did get permission to be back at Spencer's home Thursday for a welfare check for a third horse on the property.
An animal cruelty conviction could lead to a large fine and up to five years in prison.