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Arrest over mystery death of horse in cemetery

Trumpet, 35, was found dead in a cemetery after being stolen.

Trumpet, 35, was found dead in a cemetery after being stolen.

A man has been arrested over the theft and subsequent death of a beloved 35-year-old gelding  in California.

The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office in California started its investigation on January 30, following the disappearance of Trumpet from the stables of High Heart Ranch.

The horse’s body was discovered the same day in nearby Jay Hawk Cemetery. He was partially impaled on a decorative iron fence inside the gated cemetery.

Trumpet had been removed from his stall between 2am and 5am the same day. There was no evidence of damage to latches in or out of the property.

Trumpet’s blanket was found near his body, with no sign of tears or damaged buckles.

Inquiries have led to the arrest of 56-year-old Bryon Baker, described in a sheriff’s office press release as a transient.

Deputies allege Trumpet died from injuries sustained while under the control of Baker.

The local horse-owning community rallied following Trumpet’s death, with a $US5000 reward posted for information in the case.

Byron Baker

Byron Baker

Flyers were posted around the district in an effort make progress in the investigation.

The sheriff’s office said the posting of the flyers and the tips they produced contributed to the efforts of investigators in making an arrest.

On May 16, deputies started a separate investigation after reports of an attempted horse theft and sexual assault on a horse.

Multiple witnesses to the second case were later able to help in identifying the suspect as Baker.

During the second inquiry the investigators were able to link both cases.

The investigations continued until July 3, when investigators searched Baker’s motor home near the El Dorado hills.

During the search, items were seized as evidence in connection with both cases.

Baker was arrested the same day for grand theft of a horse, cruelty to animals causing suffering and or death, attempted theft of a second horse, and sexual assault on the second horse.

Sheriff John D’Agostini said he wanted to thank those who showed their support for High Heart Ranch and for the tips they provided in connection to both cases.

 

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Comments (3)

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  1. Marge Mullen says:

    “Deputies allege Trumpet died from injuries sustained while under the control of Baker.”

    Why not tell the truth…the horse was raped!

    • Victoria Barker says:

      If you read all the way through it does mention his sexual assault on the horses….
      God people disgust me… Screw jail just shoot him… it’d do the world so much good if we stop just letting men like this off easy… your punishment should fit the crime, kill or hurt someone or something (animals) you deserve the same done to you. If we actually were severe on our punishments… crime would drop to almost nothing.

      • Joy says:

        Here in east central WI a man was caught by passers-by with a female dog that he had caught, muzzled and tied to a tree and was raping her !!!! She was terrified of any man that came near her after the rape, which you sure cannot blame her for !!!!! Some people can not be called humans … they are worse than the worst criminals ever seen !!!!!!!

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