ARIZONA, USA — A $10,000 award is being offered for information leading to an arrest after several horses were shot to death at an Arizona national park.
The three wild horses were found dead at Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest in late December. All the animals were found with bullet wounds, according to rangers.
Wild horses are federally protected under the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act which declared them to be “living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West.”
The killings are not the first. According to the US Forest Service, shootings began to pick up in late 2018. Since then, advocates say more than 40 horses have been killed.
"We take any shooting, any crime against a federally protected animal on forest service land extremely seriously," Jeffery Todd, a US Forest Service spokesperson said. "We have every available asset working on this."
The US Forest Service said the shooting is actively under investigation, and the horses have since been buried.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Navajo County Sheriff’s Office at 928-524-4050.
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Arizona's Silent Witness program allows people to send in tips and share information about crimes happening within their local communities.
The program shares unsolved felony case information in multiple ways, including TV, radio and social media.
Anyone who has information on a crime or recognizes a suspect described by the program is asked to call 480-948-6377, go to the program's website online or download the Silent Witness app to provide a tip. The identity of anyone who submits a tip is kept anonymous.
Calls to Silent Witness are answered 24/7 by a live person and submitted tips are accepted at all times. Submitted tips are then sent to the detective(s) in charge of the specific case.
Individuals who submit tips that lead to an arrest or indictment in the case can get a reward of up to $1,000.