A man in Arizona faces seven charges of animal cruelty over the care of four horses.
Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio reports that his animal crimes detectives have arrested 27-year-old Jason Valenzuela.
Detectives executed a search warrant at Valenzuela’s home in Aguila, north-west of Phoenix.
Detectives seized the four horses after it was determined they had been neglected and were in what he described as dire need of food and medical attention.
Three of the horses had dental issues where their teeth had curled, which did not allow them to eat, causing starvation, as well as additional medical issues that were not taken care of.
The horses, once medically cleared, will be brought to the sheriff’s jail, where they will be cared for by inmates.
Detectives started their investigation last August, after receiving a tip through the sheriff’s animal cruelty hotline.
Detectives immediately visited the Valenzuela property and discovered the horses were in fair condition.
They then advised Valenzuela how to properly care for the horses, and continued to check on them through to the end of the year, noting improvements.
On January 31, a deputy visited the property to check on the horses and noted they had deteriorated in condition. He immediately notified the county’s animal crimes detectives.
Valenzuela was taken into custody at his home and booked at the 4th Avenue Jail on seven counts of Animal Cruelty.
Currently, Arpaio has five horses, 29 dogs, and 27 cats that are adoptable and being taken care of by inmates.