Case: Westcliffe Animal Deaths, On-going active investigation.
On Saturday April 21st, I received a call from a rancher’s daughter from Westcliffe, Colorado, about the death of her father’s horse. At the time of the call I was out of town, and wasn’t able to talk to the rancher until Tuesday, the 24th.
The horse, a 10 year old 8 month pregnant quarter horse was found dead lying on its left side facing north, with no apparent signs of how it died. The rancher had seen the horse the night before, and it showed no signs of being ill or acting strangely. There were no signs the horse had struggled to stay alive, it just appeared to have dropped to the ground leaving no hoof scuff marks. The only damage on the horse was a 6 inch razor-like round cut in the anal area about 5 inches deep, with blood stained on the hide near the wound.
The rancher, Thomas Walker, had previously lost two adult goats and a show-hog a week before under similar circumstances, except with no signs of physical damage on them. Concerned he and his animals may be the target of some irate person, he contacted the Custer County Sheriff’s Office.
Sherrif’s Office Case Report 04/20/18 Suspicious Circumstances (in summary):
At approximately 9:51 a.m. on Friday April 20, 2018, I Deputy (name removed) from the Custer County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO), was dispatched to (address removed) county of Custer, state of Colorado, on a report of 4 mutilated animals.
I arrived on scene and saw a tan horse laying on the ground and observed the anus had been removed from the horse. The edges appeared to be very smooth, with no other injuries on the horse. The horse was stiff, its eyes not cloudy and its tongue still in tack. The horse appeared to have been in great health, and I didn’t observe any tracks around the horse, however there was a dusting of fresh snow on the ground.
Note: On the supplement sheet of the case report, the rancher stated he had seen the horse about 9:30 p.m. the night before, and that it was pregnant. The rancher also stated he was home all night and didn’t hear or see anything during the night.
After talking with the Deputy, rancher Walker decided to contact a veterinarian and proceed with a necropsy, (autopsy for animals).
Rancher Walker contacted a veterinarian out of Canyon City, Colorado, and transported the horse to its office. I couldn’t request the necropsy report from the vet, but was able to interview the vet over the phone. What I learned was astonishing.
1. The horse looked good.
2. Showed possible signs of liver disease but not confirmed.
3. Showed slight scavenger damage in anal area.
4. Heart and lungs looked normal.
5. No immediate signs how it died.
6. THE HORSE WAS NOT PREGNANT!
The rancher claims the horse was pregnant because of the lop-sided belly weight, and also feeling the un-born colt kick. The vet stated the horse showed no signs of ever being pregnant. What’s even more interesting is, the vet stated she was trying to confirm that 6 other horses and 30-40 head of cattle were also found dead in the surrounding area within the past couple of months.
When I learned of the other animal deaths I started poking around. I learned a nearby ranch (un-named) had lost the horses under the same circumstances as rancher Walker and another ranch (un-named) had lost about 40 head of cattle nearby the same way. The cattle were lost in a 2 month period and were immediately buried. I also learned around January of 2018 that another local rancher had lost a prize bull mimicking a standard animal mutilation scenario. Lack of blood, no signs of struggle, surgical-like cuts in the facial area with no apparent signs of how it died.
Note: I was also contacted back in January by a rancher in Trinidad, Colorado stating that he may have had a mutilated animal on his property. His cows are free grazing and by the time he had found the animal, there were signs it was mutilated but he couldn’t confirm it. The decision was made not to investigate this case but stay in contact with the local ranchers in case another animal was found.
So what’s going on? The mutilated bull, the 40 head of cattle, the 6 other horses, all dead within a 20 mile radius of rancher Walker and all within a couple of months of each other. Then a possible similar animal death occurring over 100 miles away in Trinidad within the same time frame?
Water samples in the Westcliffe area were tested and showed no signs of contamination. The horse’s blood samples were sent and tested at Colorado State University Veterinary lab, and came up negative. The rancher thinks other types of blood testing were also done, but are being withheld from him. Something seems to be suspicious, he says.
On Friday, April 27th, I interviewed rancher Walker at the location the horse was found, and ran some field tests including; EMF readings, Radiation checks, Full Spectrum video analysis, and drone video recording looking for ground anomalies. First look at drone and full-spectrum video analysis showed no anomalies, EMF was 8 to 10 microteslas (normal) and no radiation spikes were detected. When I investigated the area, I only saw signs of the front-loader tractor used to lift the animal and place it on a flat-bed truck for transport to the vet. I also ran EMF and radiation checks where the horse is buried, and found no unusual readings.
The next couple of weeks after my field investigation, I had acquired the Sheriff’s Office Case Report, and interviewed the veterinarian who performed the necropsy, which I’ve already explained. I’m still running down leads and getting new information pertaining to the other animal deaths in the area.
On Sunday, May 6th, I was contacted by rancher Walker and was informed he lost another animal, this time a steer just over a year old. The animal was found dead lying about 30 yards west of the house on its right side facing North, his previous dead horse was found lying on its left side, facing North too! The steer showed no signs of predator damage, no signs how it died, and no signs of dirt scuff marks depicting a struggle. The animal appeared to have been placed there, just like the horse.
On Friday, May 18th, I learned the veterinarian reports of the necropsy performed on the steer, came back clean. No apparent signs of how it died, but more tests are being performed looking for an answer. Due to the uncertainty of the first necropsy blood analysis results from the horse, the rancher had taken the steer to a different lab for the necropsy and blood testing.
This is an active on-going investigation and I’ll release more information when I learn more about the other animal deaths and the final results of the steer’s blood lab analysis.
Check out the original article here.
Author: Chuck Zukowski