U.S. Charges 5 in Killing of 40 Wild Horses, Burros

From Associated Press

Five people were charged Wednesday in the killing of more than 40 wild horses and burros in north-central Nevada in a continuing federal investigation into the deaths of at least 10 times as many animals.

The five, all ranch workers, are charged with violating the Wild and Free Roaming Horse and Burro Act, a misdemeanor that could result in one year in prison and a fine of $2,000 for each conviction, according to Assistant U.S. Atty. Will Mattly.

Federal grand jury indictments named David Morehead and Shannon Brennan of Lovelock, Eugene John Thacker of Winnemucca and David Thacker and Ronald Emory Hage of Cosgrave, Mattly said.

He said all but Hage were in custody, and Hage was expected to surrender late Wednesday.


Morehead is charged with seven counts of killing a wild horse or burro between May 15 and the end of June, 1988, and one count of selling a mustang and a burro to a livestock yard.

He and Brennan are charged in two other counts with killing 28 wild horses and two wild colts in November, 1987. Hage and Eugene and David Thacker each face five counts of killing five wild horses in August, 1987.

Mattly said all of the slayings occurred in Lander and Pershing counties.