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HomeNewsArchivesArgument Reportedly Leads to Horse Being Set Afire

Argument Reportedly Leads to Horse Being Set Afire

May 26, 2004 – A horse suffering burns over 35 to 40 percent of its body was clinging to life on Wednesday after a dispute reportedly led an individual set it afire.
The animal was under the care of a veterinarian at the V.I. Agriculture Department headquarters on St. Croix following the Tuesday attack. Paul Chakroff, executive director of the St. Croix Animal Shelter, noted the irony of the assault having come just days after the island was the scene of a Caribbean conference on the relationship between cruelty to animals and violence directed at other humans.
"On Thursday and Friday of last week, we were addressing exactly these kinds of issues, Chakroff said.
According to Chakroff, the dispute involved two individuals, one of whom had been caring for the horse. As the argument intensified, he said, the other person turned on the animal.
Police and V.I. Justice Department investigators joined Chakroff Tuesday as he visited the Agriculture facility. "The horse is pretty badly burned on its left side and it's pretty severely burned on the right side as well," he said on Wednesday. "Wounds are very deep, and I think it's going to be a very difficult time in the recovery period."
While "everyone is hoping that we can bring this horse through," he said, it may have to be euthanized.
One goal of last week's conference was to motivate law-enforcement personnel to take a closer look at the links between cruelty to animals and violence against human beings. Local police take that relationship seriously, Chakroff said, adding that the response to the attack on the horse was quick on the part of police and the Attorney General's Office.
As of Wednesday night, it was not clear whether police knew the identity of the alleged assailant or whether anyone had been questioned in connection with the case.

Editor's note: The Source orginally reported the horse was burned over 90 percent of its body. Chakroff said on Friday it was 35 to 40 percent.
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