Rescue groups & neighbors say dozens of horses are not being cared for properly

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On Saturday morning, the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office announced that Jose Reveron- George is in custody. 

Neighbors and rescue groups wonder what will happen to the dozens of horses and other animals on his property now that he is in jail. They plan to bring their concerns to Columbia County Commissioners on Tuesday. 

The Sheriff’s Office says Animal Services is responsible for feeding and caring for the animals at this time. 

For the second day in a row, rescue groups went out to a Grovetown address due to reports of neglected animals.

The property owner, Jose Reveron-George, faces felony charges for terroristic threats. 

The sheriff’s office tells says Reveron- George had a court date for five counts of failure to restrain horses. He is now accused of calling in a bomb threat for the day of his court hearing. 

Now, multiple people are very worried about the animals on his property. 

“My concern is when he finally is arrested, who is going to come and care for the animals then?” says Tina Pondy who owns a local animal resuce. 

Pondy was at the property on Rockford Dr. in Grovetown onThursday when the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, Animal Control and the Department of Agriculture came with a warrant and a veternarian to check the animals and their conditions. 

“These guys are smart enough to know when they know they’re getting in trouble, if they just come and drop hay, they’ll get out of trouble,” says Pondy.

Based on what the local and state authorities saw, they did not press charges or remove any animals.

“The laws need to be changed to ensure that it’s proper horse care, not that they just have a tree to get under, they have shallow water to go get a drink out of and they have hay. That is not proper horse care,” says Pondy. 

Cindy Perez has lived across the street for six years and says she does not know much about horses, but knows something has not been right on the property. 

“I saw the main guy,  with a horse on a long lead and he was standing in the middle of the street crunching what looked like walmart bags or celaphene bags and yelling, presumably to make the horse run in a circle,” Perez describes. “The horse was running, but was obviously terrified, ears back and trying to get away from the crunchy bags.” 

She says she is not sure how there is enough water on the property because a woman with children has come to her home several times asking for it. 

“I asked them ‘do you not have any water on your property’ and she said ‘no, no water’. So I would give them a gallon of water and give the kids cups of water,” Perez said. 

Perez is glad rescue groups are here and working to get the animals the help she thinks they need. 

“It’s hard to pin point since they have all the basics, but human contact isn’t one of them and when [the owners] were there, there was always a lot of yelling and shouting and screaming and kids crying,” says Perez.

Another big concern that Perez and Pondy shared seperately with NewsChannel 6 is that many of the horses are pregnant or just had babies. Those who work with horses say the babies are even less likely to make it in those living conditions than the adults. 

The sheriff’s office tells NewsChannel 6, multiple agencies are watching this situation and looking for the property owner. 

Original article below:

Columbia County Investigators are looking into reports of animal abuse in Grovetown.

A community is upset that an owner allegedly left 40 horses for dead on Rockford Drive. 

Neighbors and animal rescuers stood in front of the property for hours making sure the horses get the care they need. 

Neighbors say they have been complaining to The Department of Agriculture for months and nothing has been done. Haley Mills said enough was enough. 

“I knew she knew a lot of people and she would get the job done,” said Mills. “Because no one would listen to me, a 17-year-old. So I got more adults into this and rescue groups.”

That’s when Mills connected with Tina Pondy, an animal rescuer. She showed Pondy the conditions the horses have been living in.

“One of the neighbors came to my place yesterday and showed me the horses,” said Pondy. “No food, no water and showed pictures of horses locked in stalls with manure up to their knees.”

Pondy says this been happening for a while. 

The Columbia County Sheriff’s Office is searching for the owner who is wanted for another charge, that’s not connected with this case.

“Every time they get in trouble, and every time The Department of Agriculture gets on to somebody, they will tell them what’s required,” said Pondy. “So they will dump just enough to keep them out of trouble.”

Mills has horses of her own. She told NewsChannel 6 reporter Devin Johnson, these horses have nowhere to roam, and the only water supply is a creek they can’t get to.

“You can have one horse per two acres, and this is not enough land for all these horses,” said explained Mills. “Each horse needs at least two acres.”

The owner of Dogwood Trails Equestrian Center says the goal is to be the voice for the animals and get them removed from poor living conditions.

“No rescue has studs, no rescue has pregnant moms, and no rescue has stallions running around freely breeding animals,” said Mills. “Rescues save animals; they don’t breed them, they don’t produce them.”

A vet did come out to check on the horses. However they were not moved, and no charges filed.

The neighbors and rescuers say they plan to be on this case until something is done. 

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