Within a couple days of getting her horse back from Leslie Penhollow in Crook County, Oregon, Stephanie West learned that her horse had gone missing and appeared to have been stolen. The horse went missing sometime from the evening of February 13th to the next morning.
West said that they determined that the suspect parked about half-a-mile down a road from the a boarding facility near Bend where she moved the horse too. “They walked by foot a half mile and took my horse out of its paddock. They then walked the horse and loaded it into the trailer!” said West.
Prior to getting her horse back and then it going missing, West had ongoing disagreements with Penhollow, both over desire to purchase the horse from West and over monies related to the boarding services for West’s horse. During part or most of the time the horse was placed in Penhollow’s care, it was at another property belonging to Christian Radabaugh, who owns Radabaugh Ranch & Construction, LLC. West said Penhollow and Radabaugh are dating.
West claims there was no written contract. When we reached out to Radabaugh for comment he also stated there was no written contract between West and Penhollow. There were discrepancies between the timeline provided by West and Radabaugh concerning when the horse was placed in Penhollow’s care, ranging from starting in March or as late as August of 2020.
On February 4th, West says that she and a friend went to Rudabaugh’s property in order to get the horse. She stated she ran into Penhollow who refused to let her have her horse. West claimed Penhollow called the Crook County Sheriff’s Office and claimed she was physically assaulted. West claimed that her friend was the one assaulted by Penhollow.
Sgt. Jeremy Bottoms with the Crook County Sheriff’s Office confirmed with NW Horse Report that Penhollow had indeed called to report a physical altercation, but did not disclose information as to who Penhollow alleged assaulted her, or the current status of that investigation.
Radabaugh confirmed that about a week after the February 4th incident, which he was also not present for, West’s horse was removed from his property. He stated that he nor Penhollow had not exercised any stable lien on the horse, and that the property was not posted or gated at the time.
“I’m glad the horse is gone, now it’s not costing me to fed and take care of it. I just don’t want to be part of it.” said Radabaugh. He stated that since the incident he has installed a gate on his own property. He further confirmed that the money issues were technically arranged between Penhollow and West.
West later indicated that she had no issue of paying Penhollow, but the issue was due to Penhollow wanting to buy the horse from her for less than she wanted and to include the amounts West owed her.
NW Horse Report has placed multiple calls since Monday to Penhollow seeking comment, and left a voicemail. She has yet to return our calls.
When speaking with the Crook County Sheriff’s Office regarding the February 4th incident, Sgt. Bottoms said that it appeared the issue concerning the horse ownership was in dispute and would be a civil issue.
However, Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office Spokesman, Sgt. Jayson Janes, told NW Horse Report that evidence already collected by Deputy Bilyeu who is investigating the case strongly supports West’s claim that the horse was stolen and is owned by her. Sgt. Janes explained this was why their office’s case is ongoing and considered a criminal investigation, not just a civil matter.
When asked if Leslie Penhollow was a suspect or person of interest, Janes only said “she was a person mentioned” and provided no further comment about Penhollow. He further confirmed that the horse was taken from a facility that is clearly known as a horse boarding stable in the Bend area, but they are not releasing the name of the facility at this time.
West did confirm that she didn’t want to accuse Penhollow of the theft, but made clear that the timing and recent circumstances of their disagreement hard to ignore. She said “it’s heartbreaking that a member of my family is gone.”
If you have any information about this case or whereabouts of the horse, please call the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office non-emergency dispatch at 541-693-6911 reference case 21-7828.