Horses seized after KUSI investigation into Ramona horse abuse - KUSI.com - KUSI News - San Diego CA - News, Weather, PPR

Horses seized after KUSI investigation into abuse allegations in Ramona

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We have learned that animal control has seized several of the horses from a Ramona ranch property, following our report which aired on Wednesday, May 22nd.

KUSI received photos received of animal control trucks, horse trailers and sheriff department vehicles at the ranch property on Highway 78, east of Ramona.

We had been there earlier in the week, investigating claims the horses there had been neglected.

Neighbors say animal control was rounding up the animals.

Animal control says 10 horses were seized.

According to Department of Animal Services Director Dawn Danielson,

"Prompt action was necessary to ensure the health and welfare of those horses"  

On Wednesday, after coming to the residence following 10 horses that had escaped and ended up on the highway Monday, we found several malnourished horses so skinny their ribs were showing.

A neighbor told us the horse's owner had been evicted from the property and described what she saw.

When the horse's owner Lori Patton arrived we tried to talk with her and got this response, "you need to get off my property, IM MOVING"

Lori Patton then continued to remove several of the 17 horses still on property to another location.

While Patton told animal control she was moving to Arizona, it turns out we found she had moved only a couple of miles away to Old Julian Highway.

At that location, we could see several horses on the site located in a couple of corrals.

While we were there, animal control officers accompanied by sheriff's deputies looked at the horses on the hilly property and accessed the areas they were being kept.

The horse owner did not want to talk with us but Animal Control Officer Joani Palumbo did provide us with what information she could.

This check is the latest by animal control. As we have reported, since 2007 the agency has investigated and resolved several claims of animal neglect by Patton.

When we asked a spokesperson for the agency for more detail on the status of this claim of neglect, in a statement the Department of Animal Services told us:

"Because of the potential of criminal charges we are unable to provide additional details of the investigation."

The San Diego County District Attorney's office is still reviewing whether or not to file charges.

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