Sunday, May 19, 2024

Roseburg, Ore. – Ace, a 3-year-old mixed breed gelding horse, was kept in a stall, malnourished, surrounded by feces, and once found, died after receiving veterinarian treatment.

The horse reportedly belonged to Morgan Faith Fowler, 24, of Winston, who was arraigned on Wednesday on first-degree animal neglect and second-degree animal abuse. More than a dozen attendees sat in on the brief court hearing.

Fowler is known as an Oregon equestrian and member of the Douglas County Mounted Posse. She was arrested April 4th and released the same day.

Darla Clark, executive director of Strawberry Mountain Mustangs, a nonprofit horse rescue, made online statements that the incident was one of the worst she has seen in more than 20 years.

“Tonight, acting as a volunteer for the Douglas County Sheriff’s Department, I carried out the heartbreaking task of burying this beautiful young soul on the ridge overlooking the rescue,” said Clark, referring to the horse allegedly abused and neglected by Fowler in an earlier statement.

According to Clark, Strawberry Mountain Mustangs will be covering all expenses incurred by the Douglas County Sheriff’s Department.

“In over 20 years working neglect cases, this is one of the most disturbing acts of cruelty I have witnessed, as evidenced by the abuse charge in addition to neglect,” Clark said.

Videos on TikTok show the alleged horse in a small stall, with mounds of feces and his body anchored to the ceiling, preventing most range of movement. His mane was matted, and his body skinny.

In a press release, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Brad O’Dell said the investigation started earlier in the week of April 4 after receiving a tip about a horse being mistreated in the 600 block of Longhorn Lane in Roseburg. During the investigation, deputies learned the horse and property owner had no connection, O’Dell said.

Fowler was featured in a March 9 article by The News-Review for her participation in the Douglas County Mounted Posse’s Performance Schooling Show.

“My whole family has been in the posse. I’ve been around it since I was a kid. So, when I turned 21, I joined and I love being in the posse,” Fowler told The News-Review. “Just being in a group of horse people and being able to be around people that are into the same thing, always learning new things and volunteering, community service is what the posse is all about.”

Fowler is scheduled for a status check on June 10 with Douglas County Circuit Court Judge George Ambrosini.

Hannah Seibold is a reporter with The News-Review in Roseburg, Oregon. The News-Review submitted this story for republishing by Equestrian Media Group. The original story can be viewed here.