Family horse shot and killed, Buncombe Co. deputies investigating

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ALEXANDER, N.C. (WSPA) – Buncombe County deputies are investigating an animal cruelty case after someone shot and killed a Western North Carolina miniature horse.

It happened March 26th around 4 p.m. on Snelson Rd in Alexander.

“I knew I loved her, but I didn’t realize how much I loved her until I come home every day, and she’s not there,” said Caitlyn Wallin, the horse’s owner.

Wallin says she had come home from running a 5K when she realized something was wrong.

“I looked over, and she wasn’t up like she normally was,” Wallin said.

Her horse Lila Belle normally greeted her at the edge of the fenced in area they kept her in with the other animals. Wallin says she noticed the horse wasn’t breathing.

“I thought maybe she had a heart attack or something because she was healthy,” Wallin said.

She says her father started digging a grave for Lila Belle when he found the bullet. That’s when they immediately called deputies.

“The coroner said it was a perfect shot,” said Stephanie Wallin, Caitlyn’s sister. “It went through both ventricles of her heart.”

The family says deputies say it was intentional making this an animal cruelty case.

“He said it was like you would shoot a deer if you were hunting,” Stephanie said.

The family says the incident has made them worry and brought a lot of pain to their family.

“We always felt very safe around here, and that changed everything,” Stephanie said.

They want to plea to the public hoping this doesn’t happen to anyone else’s pet.

“If anyone knows anything, just please come forward,” Stephanie said.

If anyone has any information on the case, they are asked to call the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office or Asheville-Buncombe Crime Stoppers at (828) 255-5050.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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