Horse found slaughtered in Golden Gate Estates

Writer: Melissa Montoya
Published: Updated:
Detectives are looking for information on a vehicle of interest in a horse slaughter in Golden Gate Estates. (CREDIT: WINK News)

Detectives are investigating the death of a horse in Golden Gate Estates earlier this week.

The horse was an adult female sorrel chestnut with a large star or white spot, and stripe on its forehead, according to the Collier County Sheriff’s Office. It was found in the area of 27th Avenue NE.

The Collier County Sheriff’s Office is asking Southwest Florida horse owners to be on alert and check their pastures for any missing horses.

The dead horse appeared to be in need of farrier services, the law enforcement agency said.

Deputies have released two images of a vehicle of interest in the case.

The vehicle, a pickup, was seen on 27th Avenue Northeast on Monday, Jan. 11, at approximately 10:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m., the sheriff’s office said.

It is believed to be a 2013 to 2020 GMC or GM product, full-size single cab long bed pickup with stock black trim and wheels. The truck has what appears to have a vinyl tonneau cover on the bed.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Collier County Sheriff’s Office at 239-252-9300 (non-emergency) or to remain anonymous call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS (8477).

In addition to this horse death, deputies are also investigating two deaths last year. It’s too early to tell if the deaths are connected to this one.

In July 2020, a horse was slaughtered in Immokalee and another horse was killed in Golden Gate Estates last February.

In those two cases, someone appeared to enter a pasture and led the horses to a nearby pasture where the animals were butchered for their meat, the sheriff’s office said.

The Collier County Sheriff’s Office’s Agriculture Unit and Criminal Investigations Department are investigating the horse deaths. They are also working across county lines with other agencies where similar crimes have occurred.

In late December, a bull was found slaughtered for its meat in Lee County. That case remains under investigation.

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