Horse News

Horse-Slaughter Advocate’s Video Spurs Investigation

Source: By Amanda J. Crawford & Alan Bjerga of

“It’s extreme cruelty, a penalty, to maliciously kill an animal,”


An employee of a New Mexico company that has sparked outrage for its plans to slaughter horses is being investigated for animal cruelty in connection with a video in which he taunts animal welfare advocates while killing a horse.

Tim Sappington, 54, may face charges over the video, said Bobby Pierce, the deputy director of the New Mexico Livestock Board, an Albuquerque-based law enforcement agency. Sappington is the only employee of Valley Meat Co. near Roswell, which is seeking to become the first company to run a horse-slaughter plant in the U.S. since 2007.

“It’s extreme cruelty, a penalty, to maliciously kill an animal,” said Pierce, who said he believes charges will probably result from the investigation, which began today. Valley Meat said it is evaluating Sappington’s continued employment.

Posted on the Internet several months ago, the video was widely circulated among animal-welfare activists this week after a March 19 Bloomberg News story on Valley Meat that featured Sappington. The video shows Sappington looking into the camera, addressing an expletive to animal rights activists and then firing a pistol-like device between the eyes of the horse, which falls to the ground trembling.

“We’re horrified by the video, and we are glad to hear that there’s an investigation going on,” said Keith Dane, director of equine protection for the Humane Society of the U.S. in Washington. “It appears this was made for publicity’s sake and to taunt animal lovers.”

Personal Consumption

Sappington, who said he eats horse meat two to three times a week, said he killed the animal for food. The full video, which wasn’t posted online, shows him skinning and gutting the animal, too, he said.

“I killed that animal for my consumption,” Sappington said in a telephone interview, before referring calls to an attorney. “If I had shot that thing in the guts or the legs or beat it and left it in the pasture for the coyotes to get at, it’d be a different discussion. I shot that for my human, my personal, consumption.”

It is legal to kill livestock for food, Pierce said.

“If he claims he was killing it for his own food, the investigation would take a different turn,” Pierce said.

Dane, whose organization opposes horse slaughter and is supporting a bill in Congress to ban the practice, said the video shows “a callous disregard for the life of an animal.” Horse slaughter is cruel and unnecessary and the meat from the animals may not be safe because of drugs given to horses during their lives, he said.

‘Seriously Concerned’

“If it indicates the type of person who will work at Valley Meat, we are seriously concerned,” Dane said of the video.

The company, which previously processed cattle at its facility about 8 miles from downtown Roswell, could begin slaughtering horses and shipping the meat to other countries as soon as three weeks, A. Blair Dunn, an attorney for Valley Meat, said March 15. The company is one of several that have asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture to provide inspectors so that they can begin operating. A federal law barring funding for the inspections lapsed in 2011.

Horse slaughter has been an emotional issue among animal- welfare advocates in the U.S., where eating of horse meat is rare and surveys show most Americans oppose the practice. Still, many farmers and ranchers say humane slaughter is necessary to dispose of unwanted animals…(CONTINUED)

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26 replies »

  1. A publicity ploy gone wrong. I bet he only decided to butcher the animal after he thought about what he had done…….naaahhh that aint it. He’s obviously a throwback incapable of reasonable thinking. A beautiful animal destroyed by a sadistic savage. He doesn’t deserve jail time but rather anthill time. Somebody get the rope.


  2. He deliberately did that to taunt the animal rights people. And when he found out he may be in trouble for it, then he changes the story and says he killed it to eat it! It is legal in this country to kill and eat your own livestock, which is what his lawyer probably told him to say. There is nothing i can say for this creep except that he is pure evil!


    • No, actually he is more like a spoiled rotten child who isn’t going to get his way so he threw a temper tantrum and killed the horse.


  3. I saw that you tube pulled the video and/or made him pull it. That was a threat and his actions made it clear that he could do the same to any one of us. I hope they bring charges against his butt.


  4. What a sick person!!! We all know why he did it.. He deserves the same fate…Tie em up and send him to the darkest parts of the Amazon…I hope that he is prosecuted to the fulliest extent of the law..Humans like this do not deserve to have such beautiful animals…Who would sell any age horse to a sick Bastard like this…? The law should restrict him from ever owning any more horses…in fact if he owns any other horses the state Dept of Agriculture should be impounded for their safety. No plea deals for this Moran if he is ever prosecuted.


  5. Oh that sorry bastard is about stupid as they come mad at animal activist so he goes and shoots his horse real tuff man. The sad thing is most people who act like this its because that is the only sense of control is when they pick on poor innocent animals!!! Hope you get kicked in head by your next poor horse that falls into your hands!!!


  6. If this video doesn’t convince all humans to NOT eat horsemeat, then nothing will ! The man is not right in the head–and admits to eating horse a couple of times a week.


  7. He’s one real pathetic person!!! Taking the life of his horse the way he did, just to make a point tells you a lot about this sick sob! He should be prosecuted for his actions and never allowed to own another animal again!.


  8. Where are the laws for cruelty to animals? The government, blm and contractors don’t follow those rules. Wonder what he would say if someone said you kill animals for fun and put a gun to his head. Now we have anti guns laws….. sick very sick


  9. I used the sites listed and sent msg. Hope it get’s read and maybe someone will listen. Thanks for all you do. Pat GF, Mt.P.S. So glad the whole video wasn’t put on, that was enough for me.Date: Thu, 21 Mar 2013 23:52:44 +000


  10. The Post Office needs revenue, and this man could use a few thoughtful letters from those concerned about his actions: Two addresses have been posted online: Timothy Craig Sappington Jr., 221 Dallas Morgan Road, Dexter, NM 88230 and 229 Dallas Morgan Road, Dexter, NM 88230. Sadly, the youtube video is still there, perhaps reposted by other people.


  11. So heres what needs to happen a little inquiry with an attorney he said the animal abuse is indicated by the title, the fact he did no explanation, narrative to define it was for consumption legally leading tbe public into an animal snuff video. Because he never evicerated the animal to make sure it did not suffef he said they should press chargez for the shock factor animal death video alas animal snuff film for entertainment while violates Federal laws. What he said can be construed as a threat or attack impliec towards a person prior to shooting animal. He also stated that he can sued in civil court for shocking people with no warning to use caution in viewing content before he filmed. He also is violating the internets restrictions on what is considered learning tools, evidence, or entertainment and can be sued for that as well. He looked up the laws and found that even in private food consumptio.. The animal cannot suffer, the animal in the video he stated is kicking and suffering, showing ligence. He also reasoned since this was not an underover video this is very revealing of the slaughter industries confidence that they are ab ove the law. He also stated this is gross misconduct and there should no hesitation in firing this man. It sets the tone for the type of conduct which can be expected at this type of establishment. He urged anyone and everyone to contact authorities and get tbis banned. Tbis sets the precident for whats to come. He also wishes the entire horse community his sincerest empathy and outrage for such a horrible event. He also asked where the horse w the kill buyer tag came from, was it santos kill pen? What is tbe location,?


  12. Wonder what they would say if we started using silhouettes of that primitive Tim Sappington for target practice and said take that F****** horse slaughters?


  13. Just another reason to get a concealed weapon permit you never know when you might have to defend yourself against the horse killers.


  14. Maybe we should contact the Roswell police department with a complaint against Sappington for making a death threat against us. Each of us is an activist so the threat was a personal threat against each of us.



  15. This guy needs to be prosecuted. This so shows just the mindset of pro slaughter advocates..horses are nothing to them..who cares how they die..if this guy treats a horse like this…how does he treat humans?


  16. Yep, there’s just no cure for stupidity. The word inhumane doesn’t even begin to describe this act – try heinous. What’s inhumane is knowingly selling a tainted meat product for human consumption outside the US. And, what’s even worse is insulting the intelligence of the rest of the people of the world by assuming they don’t suspect anything. Like I said, there’s no cure for stupidity.


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