CITRUS COUNTY, Fla - A Citrus County woman facing animal neglect charges is accused of starving her Arabian horse until it needed to be euthanized.
Tammi Kampman, 43, of Floral City, was arrest Thursday and charged with one count of animal cruelty.
Deputies were called out to her house after receiving a call regarding animal abuse.
When deputies arrived, they noted seeing an Arabian horse so severely emaciated, its bones were visible. The hooves on the horse where also unkempt and clearly had not been trimmed or cared for in a long time, deputies said.
Kampman, owner of the emaciated horse who went by the name Mary, told deputies the horse had been steadily losing weight over the past year for an unknown reason, an arrest affidavit states. She reportedly told deputies she had tried several methods of trying to help the horse gain weight and improve, but nothing worked.
According to the arrest affidavit, Kampman claims she called friends over who were knowledgeable about equine care and that they had tried to provide treatment, but their methods also did not work either.
Kampman told authorities she only knew how to ride and feed horses.
According to neighbors who provided authorities with sworn statements, the horse had been neglected for months. A neighbor stated that she informed animal control about the horse several times and had told officers the neglect was "far gone."
The neighbor told deputies she offered Kampman her pasture and even offered to let the horse stay in her overgrown pasture, but that Kampman refused.
Owning four horses, the neighbor told deputies Mary could have been saved if Kampman would have called a veterinarian earlier.
Deputies also interviewed the original owner of the horse. According to the arrest affidavit, the original owner said she gave Kampman the horse in 2009 and that the horse was in great health. The original owner also tried to get the horse back when she noticed it was looking emaciated but Kampman refused, deputies said.
Deputies also spoke to another neighbor who had observed the horse over the past year. That neighbor told deputies the horse began to eat bark off trees and that she had never seen Kampman or any member of her family caring for the horse or bring into out into the yard to graze.
Kampman is being held on $500 bond.
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