written by Jerry Finch, Founder and President of Habitat for Horses
Jerry Finch on the 3-Strikes Disaster
Jason Meduna is sleeping in jail tonight. Almost a year ago his crimes were discovered – dead horses stacked on top of one another, hidden from view in the sandhills of Nebraska. Despite the claims of poison, either from his neighbors, radiation, aliens or whatever other factor his mind could come up with, the good people of Nebraska found him guilty of 145 counts of animal cruelty. Tonight he starts paying back, with a minimum of 20 months in prison with excellent behavior. That’s a minimum of 600 nights for him to close his eyes; at least two nights per horse, both dead and alive, to visit with him in his dreams.
He can’t own any animal for 30 years, so says the Judge. If he screams and yells, he could spend as much as 10 years behind bars.
Is that enough? It’s really not for me to say. I carry around a far worse sentence for his crimes than he ever will, for I see the horror of those sandhills every time I close my eyes. I see the once beautiful manes of wild horses, captured by the BLM and thrown away into the hands of someone that has no feelings, that watched them die in pain and did nothing. I know, beyond any doubt, that he starved the horses to death, and that has now been proven in court. The silence from his biggest fans is deafening, just as is the silence of the dead horses, yet for as long as I live, the sight will never leave me.
Jason Meduna has been proven guilty in a court of law and sentenced to 5 to 10 years. He might get out in 20 months. He has to pay $3,800 in court costs.
If there are any wild horses left on the range in 20 months, I’m sure Jason Meduna can get a job with the BLM. He’s certainly qualified.
Categories: Equine Rescue, Horse News, The Force of the Horse, Wild Horses/Mustangs
Jerry wrote this one.
Savewildhorses I hope you are right because, as Jerry says, those are the visions I have every time I close my eyes too and I havent been there to see the carnage in person, so I can only imagine how it must be for those that have. Jason I hope you find you own Bubba there in your confinement and that you learn what it is like to be confined, deprived of basic rights and abused the way you abused those animals. I dont believe anything could make up for what you did but you will have to answer to a higher calling one day and when you do we will rejoice because payback is hell!
It only takes one episode of a carnage for some of us to learn from, and others can have it slap them in the face forever and still not get it.
When you talk about the horrible memories, for me it was as a child riding my own mount up to the canning factory. We didn’t know it at the time, that the corrals were filled with horses soon to be butchered into dog food, we only knew it was a place that had a lot of pretty, mostly Mustangs and they would sell them to people. We’d sit on the backs of our horses and pick out the ones we would want to take home.
That was until one day when I went back looking for the pretty Mustang that I saw two days earlier begging my parents to buy. When the workers opened up the garage like door to yell at us kids, we weren’t allowed in the back, it was then I understood what this place was when I saw the huge garbage containers filled with the heads of the horses I saw a few days earlier!
From that day forward, I’ve been involved with trying to stop slaughter and save our mustangs. I was 12 years old and one of those school kids that wrote the letters for Annie and had the other kids in my creative writting class do the same.
I wish the 3 strikes ranch carnage didn’t happen. I wish all the beautiful and once free roaming Mustangs did not have to suffer. I hope some good has come from all those agonizing deaths so that they weren’t in vain, like people becoming more aware,and Meduna sitting his ass in the can for the full length of his sentence, anything else is just a slap on the wrist.
Jerry, No, he will never get near wild horses again. Not if any of us can help it. And maybe the lot of BLM will not get near them anymore if we have a say in it.
When I first heard about the horses lying dead on the ranch in Nebraska, I had heard it was a man who flew over in a plane who saw them. I did not know that was you until recently. It is a haunting image I carry but nothing like yours. mar
Where is Ray Fields, NOW???
They ought to be cell mates as they could keep each other entertained.
“…Somewhere in time’s Own Space
There must be some sweet pastured place
Where creeks sing on and tall trees grow
Some Paradise where horses go,
For by the love that guides my pen
I know great horses live again.”
Hold it to your heart Jerry, and Marilyn is right, he will not have a horse again. I will send pictures to the parol officers of Harley and Cheyenne, when it’s time, this a promise you.
The really sad part, outside of the death, destruction and torture of these magnificent animals is that people like Meduna NEVER have bad dreams about anything. It’s always about them.
Sorry, Jerry…I’m sure he’ll sleep well other than being bummed about being in the can.
Are there any fraud charges re: his rescue? No restitution other than court costs? He can own animals in 30 years? That is scary.
I’ve already made some comments about the 10 Peruvian Pasos that were FINALLY turned over to our Rescue after a 9-month court battle. These horses were in REALLY bad shape at seizure, and required a great deal of specialized care.
In our case, the INCOMPETENT DA never asked for ANY restitution. We had well over $16,000 in documented expenses related to these horses, and she didn’t even ask they be entered into evidence as proof of how much it had taken to save them.
We’re going to be working with our vet and the local livestock inspector to develop a checklist & timeline for animal cruelty prosecutors. If they can’t connect the dots, they should be canned!
OUTRAGEOUS, but so typical when equines (livestock) are the ones that suffer and die. So HE can’t OWN animals for 30 years. What about his wife? What about his pals? Can he still work around animals? I haven’t yet found the actual text of the sentencing, but here’s the link to the Scotts Bluff, Nebraska, Star Herald article:
Just read it. I’m too disgusted to make any more comments right now.
I was witness to 26 ghostly horses as they arrived at Lifesavers in CA on Mother’s day 09.
Today, I am now honored with 3 of them dwelling with me here on my ranch in West Texas. Feel free to have a look at former 3 strikes we now call our 3 Spirits running free and loving life. I have before photos which were supplied for the case to the prosecutor they can be found in the main gallery…long live all wild horses …karma is a hard circle my friends.
Peace, beauty and light
Equestrian fine art photography
3 strikers a year later-
Rachael I am sitting here with tears streaming down my face after visiting your photo galleries. This is such a wonderful thing that you have done and all the others that were involved with saving them and all of the other horses. I look forward to watching their progress over the months to come. I find it hard to believe when I look at their before photos. You are right Karma is a hard circle.
Rachel, stunningly beautiful photography of stunningly beautiful horses. bless you. & them.
We can at least be happy for Pam Nicoles that she was able to get El Mariachi and his mare from this guy before they died. They were fat, sassy and happy when she delivered them to Jason. 9 months later they were shells.
Through a series of contacts Pam was able to contact Michael Blake (who wrote “Dances with Wolves”) and now they live with him.
They’ll never free again. But both Pam and Michael are committed to allowing them as much freedom as possible. They get the run of Michael’s ranch.
Still once this guy gets out on parole we need to educate people about him. Make his life so miserable that he has to live out his sentence on prison property just to be safe. And yes, there is precedence for this. It happened here in my County.
I sit here writing about what i witnessed at this wreck…this thing is a constant with me…I cannot forget the stench, the grimacing skulls, I wish I could see all the horses we walked off that killing ground…I want to touch every horse I loaded out…I want them all to know I miss them…I wonder where they all are tonite?…are they as safe as the day we rescued them?…do you think God will let them remember us?…I pray for these horses every night…I’m sad and happy…I tear up easily when I think of the haloes in the sand the dead and dying horses pawed in the ground as they lay suffering…I shudder to think of how this idiot could drag dead and dying horses into the hills while colts followed struggling mothers or mothers followed wide eyed fearful colts…how long did the horses circle their herdmates on the killing grounds?…what is it like to hurt so much from hunger?
Yeah I am bothered by this a lot…I’ve spoken to professionals about it…they say these feelings will pass…but then I drive down the road…I spy a horse on a distant hill and I fear for it…life goes on…but not for the 100 or so sullen horses asleep on a hill just south of here…one eye towards the heavens and the other gazing into hell through the sands that now blow over it’s poor bleached bones…yeah I fear for horses everywhere…and I hate with a vengeance anyone who could ever do a deed like this…
Jason thanks for the memories….may you rot in hell and I hope Bubba weighs 300 lbs…and winks at you each night…
One good thing has come out of this…the mare I kept delivered a fine stud colt about 4 weeks ago,,,his name is “Shelby’s Sunny Surprise”, as far as I know he is the last addition to this band of survivors and it is only a fitting gift from God I have him in my pocession…I got a lot of memories of this experience….
I hope jason and Anissa know I have horses from this wreck and that they have been very well taken care of by me…I hope that bothers them a lot…
jason just in case your reading this…or just in case Bubba draws your attention to this…this horse Shelby is now mine and I ride the mare from time to time…I had a lady ride her out for me shortly after I brought her home…the lady picked up on all the mistakes you taught the horse…in spite of all your intentions,actions and lack of knowledge the mare turned out to be a fine cow horse…
As much as you, ray Fields and jim Lamley think you know about horses, be convinced, the lady who rode the horse out knows more about horses than all three of you combined ….how do I know?…she’s my daughter!!!!!
It has got to drive these imbeciles bonkers to know we got Jason convicted just on his arrogance, stupidity and demeanor…to me that is some form of justice!
It sure got quiet from the Foundation Man once we got a conviction…Bubba and Ray Fields have a lot in common…they both weigh 300 lbs and think Jason is still innocent…Ray…Bubba…it’s just a dream and a fantasy…LMAO!!!!