Horses Taken from Peaceable Farm Seized Again from Horse Rescue
Six horses rescued from Peaceable Farms in 2015 have now been seized by authorities in King William County due to a report of poor conditions at New Beginnings Horse Rescue.
ORANGE COUNTY, Va. (WVIR) - An animal cruelty investigation unfolding in King William County has ties to an animal cruelty case from Orange County.
Several horses seized from Peaceable Farm have again been taken by authorities after deputies received multiple complaints that the animals at New Beginnings Horse Rescue had little or no food and water.
Wednesday, June 8, the King William Sheriff's Office Animal Control unit seized 42 horses from New Beginnings.
Orange County Commonwealth's Attorney Diana O'Connell says six of the horses seized had come from Peaceable Farm.
In October 2015, deputies with the Orange County Sheriff's Office led a raid at Peaceable Farm. Over a hundred horses and many cats and dogs were discovered on the Somerset property. Anne Goland (aka Anne Shumate Williams) surrendered over 80 horses, 28 cats, and 7 dogs over the course of a few days.
Eleven horses from Peaceable Farm were taken to New Beginnings.
O'Connell says animal rescue organizations do not have state oversight, and that she and other officials were led to believe New Beginnings was a legitimate rescue organization.
A joint statement from O'Connell, Orange County Attorney Thomas E. Lacheney, and Sheriff Mark A. Amos says:
We understand, and share, the deep concern and frustration of all those who are outraged at the suffering these horses have endured.
The fact that the situation in King William County is strikingly similar to what occurred in Orange County last October underscores the reality that the lack of oversight, inspection and regulation of animal rescue facilities in Virginia limits the ability of local government to prevent, manage or budget for these situations.
The King William Sheriff’s Office says the investigation is ongoing, and that charges are pending.
The commonwealth’s attorney for King William County is said to be on vacation, so charges won't be placed until after he returns on Tuesday.
Goland is facing 27 charges of animal cruelty and 13 charges of embezzlement.