Slaughter Horses in Tennessee Wreck Expected Anytime in Presidio Holding Pens

By Steven Long

Photo by Julie Caramante

HOUSTON, (Horseback) – More than 30 slaughter bound horses are likely to arrive soon in the border town of Presidio, Texas after enduring a wreck that landed their cattle trailer on its side along a busy interstate highway. The city of 4,639 sits on the Rio Grande River border with Mexico. The town is home to the C-4 feedlot, a holding facility for slaughter bound horses south of the border, the animal’s possible destination, the kill box in Ojinaga, Mexico.

The 35 horses were traveling through Tennessee on I-40 Monday when the driver of the tractor trailer truck, Mance Reed, went to sleep at the wheel resulting in 35 horses panic stricken and trapped in the trailer laying on its side. Three horses were euthanized after the wreck, but 32 continued on their journey to Texas.

The incident has again sparked anti-slaughter advocates to call for passage of the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act, legislation that is annually introduced in Congress but has never been enacted into law.

Many blame Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid (D) Nevada, a horse slaughter proponent for blocking passage.

Yet Reid may well face negative public opinion in this election year from a group that is much more powerful than timid senators and congressmen who have annually given lip service to the bill but boast a failure rate getting the popular legislation passed and signed by the president of zero.

In survey after survey, more than 70 percent of all Americans have said they oppose horse slaughter for human consumption. The United Federation of Teachers Humane Education Committee has lent its considerable clout to an effort by the Chicago based Equine Welfare Alliance to inspire a children’s letter writing campaign to Washington politicians supporting passage of the AHSPA.

Such a children’s campaign secured passage of the 1971 Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro Act under the leadership of Reno’s Velma Johnson, affectionately known as “Wild Horse Annie.” The legislation set aside sanctuaries in the western states for the North American Mustang and wild donkeys. The campaign resulted in the only unanimous votes in both houses of Congress in recent memory.

In a stealth midnight move three years ago Reid and former Sen.

Conrad Burns (R) Montana, removed protections for the wild horses, and this year during a last minute budget vote a prohibition against funding of federal meat inspectors in American slaughterhouses was removed. The move has sparked a flurry of wishful thinking in the meat industry lusting for new markets in Europe and Asia.

The Tennessee horses were in route from Three Angels Farm in Lebanon, a facility holding hundreds of animals and believed to be a holding station for slaughter bound horses.

The owner of the farm confirmed to a Nashville television station he was involved in incidents at the Presidio feed lot late last year that sparked investigations by Presidio County Sheriff Danny Dominguez, the Texas Animal Health Commission, and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

The television station also reported the Tennessee owner of the horses is under investigation for transporting horses to Texas without proper documentation.

Horseback confirmed with Texas Animal Health Commission investigator Richard Wagner late last year that the same Coggins certificates were repeatedly used for horses coming into the C-4 lot. The Tennessee Highway Patrol is still investigating whether the horses involved in the I-40 wreck had proper paperwork. The firm transporting the horses has had a spotty record of passing state safety inspections including at least one incident of trucks being removed from the road Nashville’s Channel 4 reported.

The C-4 lot was given a slap on the wrist by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality after dead and dying horses were found in a dry creek bed leading to the Rio Grande.

The flash flood prone stream had nearly 100 carcasses in varying stages of decomposition during the height of hurricane season when flooding can hit the state at any time.

The Equine Welfare Alliance has also charged that horses rejected as too ill or thin for slaughter have been dumped by killer buyers in Southwestern states.

38 comments for “Slaughter Horses in Tennessee Wreck Expected Anytime in Presidio Holding Pens

  1. Rhonda Fridley
    January 20, 2012 at 5:05 am

    People! The PROBLEM is Not the slaughter plants… is HOW THEY GET THERE!! Except for the Mexican plant…..which if mainstream media would play the horrific videos people have taken of how the poor horses 1. Get taken off the trucks 2. Get run down the chute into “THE box” where a uncaring MEXICAN tries MULTIPLE times to STAB this poor terrified horse in the neck??!!! So, yes , whoever said they gut them and they are still alive… true! But because it’s “TOO GRAPHIC” to put on t.v. NO ONE knows the REAL STORY!!!! Also, have you been driving around the countryside or even in towns for that matter and seen the torture horses are enduring BECAUSE there is NO MONEY in selling you horse so they just turn them loose or JUST LET THEM STARVE in their pastures!!!!!! Seriously!! If we had slaughter plants that were watched for humane treatment, sheriffs and cops got off their asses and actually checked every truckload of horses they seen going down the highway AND our wonderful goverment used some of their paychecks to pay people to do all these things….slaughter THE HUMANE WAY is WAY BETTER than what I have seen here in Texas where hay is so expensive people are letting their horses starve right in front of them because lately to take your horse to a sale barn…YOU PAY THE SALE BARN when you sell your horse not the other way around!!!!Do any of you know what it costs to put a horse down and have it picked up??? I myself have horses and would not want to send mine to a sale and would spend the money to have them put down………but the majority… not and will not so where do these horses go?? Yes the breed associations need to put a stop to the backyard breeder!!!And yes horse owner need to take responsibility for THEIR horses when they get “In their Golden Years” and not just dump them on the side of the road! If they would have the plants open back up in the U.S. then these poor horses that do get sold to slaughter wouldn’t have to be on these trucks for HOURS OR DAYS they would be right here in the U.S. And start fining these asshole trader/kill buyers when they break the law…there would be some money for the gov’t!!!!!Seriously who is checking the Mexico plants?? They are VERY cruel people!!! I seen the video’s…..have you? Check out horse slaughter on youtube!!!

    • Denise
      January 20, 2012 at 11:39 am

      Sorry, unless you have a plant in every state, they will still ship horrifically for hours and hours and even then, they (the KBs) will still ship internationally. It is economically unfeasible and unprofitable to have such a configuration of plants….that’s why there were only three left by 2007.

      When we had the plants here, they still shipped horrifically. It doesn’t matter where the plants are; it’s an evil enterprise and is essentially self regulated.

      It’s against the law to starve a horse. Take the money for your feed and hay and humanely euth your equine. Auctions still exist for HCHS.

  2. RAF
    January 19, 2012 at 7:19 pm

    Gee, look at what’s really going on with the “nice, honest, concerned horse broker”.

    And the kill buyer, excuse me, “concerned horse owner” doesn’t even have a license for this.

  3. J. R. Morrull
    January 18, 2012 at 9:21 pm

    I believe the horses are being used by the drug cartels to ship and distribute drugs.

  4. Susan
    January 18, 2012 at 9:03 pm

    Thank you, Horseback for your usual well researched and factual reporting. These horses deserve better.. let’s hope law enforcement cooperates across state lines on this.

    That truck is a public safety hazard, public health risk and humane mess rolling down the highway, disrespecting everything.

    With the polls favoring the ban on horse slaughter, the only thing pro-slaughter has is lobby dollars.

    Money may be pushing against us, but there is good news. In a horse district in my part of the country, election day came as a rude awakening for one pro slaughter Rep. Horse people were furious that a pro-slaughter Congressman represented them. He got voted out. The new Rep has become educated on the issue, listened to his constituents and co-sponsored the bill.

    If it can happen once, it can happen again and again.

    Sen Reid was not a shoe-in last time. Targeting key districts, and educating the 70-80% of the population .. those numbers are too high to ignore. In TX, thought of as conservative, one poll was 90%.

    Sure the lobbies are powerful, but more people these days join the Farm Bureau for the insurance. The FB lobbyists may claim they have such-and-such votes, but the demographic is not what it was in the old days. We have every reason to think the experience in the district that voted out a pro-slaughter Rep can happen again and again across the country.

    Kids don’t like horse slaughter. Moms and Dads don’t. Moms and Dads vote. Let’s keep getting the word out.

    Thank you again Steve for real journalism here. This is about more than the horses.. it’s about who we are as a country.

  5. Barbara Warner
    January 18, 2012 at 7:11 pm

    Animals’ Angels found this AO at the Mayfield , KY kill auction too. Just sickening and to think his farm is called Three Angels and he has a lot of horses there.

  6. January 18, 2012 at 5:30 pm

    I pray that there will be folks waiting for the arrival of these horses to the Presido holding pens. The farm denies they are going there, which already proves after the drivers statements that they are the scum liars that we know they are. Their deeds in the last Presido bust show their credibility. Thank you for once again being on top of things Horseback! It may not save these horses, but hopefully it helps build awareness and the numbers will continue to grow that contact our government and DEMAND this madness stop!

    • Susan
      January 19, 2012 at 3:00 am

      Pray for those horses. They probably already are there.

  7. marge
    January 18, 2012 at 4:40 pm

    As usual, a hard hitting article! Down here in Presidio Coiunty, I have alerted DPS and Sheriff’s Office. BOLO Dorian trucking.

    • Joe
      January 18, 2012 at 6:39 pm


      The information you got for this article is wrong, pure speculation. I was assured that you investigated your source before you wrote an article. Here is a report from the towing company, Highway Patrol and vet. The horses were all handled humanely.. Joe

      • terri
        January 18, 2012 at 9:08 pm

        With all due respect, of course they would be handled humanely in the spotlight. So why are the sides boarded up to prevent public viewing of these horses. Lets just see how this one plays out. I think you are mistaken, sadly mistaken.

        • Joe
          January 19, 2012 at 1:11 pm


          What is wrong with hauling horses in a trailer that has been enclosed near the bottom? I would think this is very humane to protect the horses from the cold winter air. For some silly reason the anti’s say they were hiding the horses. Just why was the article posted here as always show a double deck trailer? This is done to sway people to believe horse dealers are all crooks.. More pure speculation and false reporting.. Joe

          • admin
            January 19, 2012 at 2:20 pm

            Editor’s note. We don’t like to be accused of false reporting. The fact is, a photo of the trailer was unavailable, however we did post a news report out of Nashville’s Channel 4. The fact is, we used the photo of the trailer for illustration purposes only.

            The Editor

      • jamie
        January 18, 2012 at 9:48 pm

        yah….I’m sure they were fed and watered before loaded back on another trailer to be shipped to the “retraining facility”

        treated humanely my donkey!

      • Linda Redman
        January 18, 2012 at 10:23 pm

        this owner is already under investigation for incidents taking place at presidio last year, according to the Humane Society the majority had green tags – indicating going to slaughter. If you had a brain you would realize that all of this is deplorable animal cruelty. Horses are in accident where several die, then they are reloaded onto another trailer and taken to another location and then reloaded again to go to presidio (despite what the owner says – the driver said that’s where he was headed). Obviously you don’t have a clue about horses or any type of animals to think that any of this is ok.

      • Denise
        January 18, 2012 at 11:08 pm

        Wondered where the killers were after post 15.

        Joe, John, skip, Anotherhorse?, Dorothy, (whatever)…you never fail to continue to disappoint.

        Only sleazy equine killers, peddling dirty meat for a buck would quibble about this incident.

        Thank you for the documentation (again) via a public forum.

      • Susan
        January 19, 2012 at 2:59 am

        Joe, please. How many articles have you read? Of course, the owner is going to say they were not headed to Texas. It is all so crooked. God made this happen for a reason. I woke up out of the maze of feral cats I rescue daily to see what is happening to my other friends. I saw a desperate horse on the TV that night with total fear and was horrified while it was being loaded. Those horses endured hell but theirs is now my passion of love towards others on their way and possibly even those out there. I will contact my representative and senator tomorrow and email them the article I printed today before it was taken down. I have some horse friends I found once before here. I will see what they know. I do know loads of people in Lebanon, TN. I know they are fuming and I know something will be done. Some of the best animal control programs started in Lebanon, TN. I promise you this will not be forgotten.

    • terri
      January 18, 2012 at 9:04 pm

      Thank you for looking out.

  8. shirley smith
    January 18, 2012 at 4:16 pm

    Thank you Horseback on line for keeping us updated and please keep up the good work you are definately voices for the horses that don’t have a voice:)

    • terri
      January 18, 2012 at 9:03 pm

      Ditto..Horseback magazine gets accolades from those of us on our farm. We thank you and so do our horses.

  9. SAM
    January 18, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    Agree with both Barbara and AnnieB. This underground buisness of cruel Inhumun Horse-Slaughter has got to STOP!
    To much is to much. period
    Gouverments need to do something and fast! (They) agree to this crap, well (they) clean-up their mess now!
    A Licence to breed Equines is another solution.
    Good Luck to all who love their horses and don,t want Horse-Slaughter anymore, anywhere….

    • terri
      January 18, 2012 at 9:00 pm

      Huggs to you Sam.

    January 18, 2012 at 4:10 pm


    • marge
      January 18, 2012 at 8:18 pm

      Get in touch with USDA APHIS, who are supposed to enforce the transport act, why this is never enforced.

    • C.
      January 20, 2012 at 3:33 pm

      Then with 130,000 horses on you imginary “chunk of land” you would be the world’s biggest hoarder. Get real.

  11. Angel
    January 18, 2012 at 4:07 pm

    Horses that are bound out of the country like to France, Germany, Holland, etc are required to have transport papers and spend 30 days at a quarantine facility befoe leaving the USA at the owners expense. These horses going to Mexico or Canada should have to follow the same rules as everyone else.

    • terri
      January 18, 2012 at 8:58 pm

      But they don’t. And some that do have papers are using falsified paperwork by dishonest vets. The USDA doesn’t do their job either.

  12. annette
    January 18, 2012 at 3:12 pm

    Laws need to be passed that you can’t breed horses without a license or strict penalities if you do. If all owners would be responsible when their horses get old and do the right thing and put them down we wouldn’t be in the situation were in. It’s horrible that people are so heartless. Don’t get a horse if you don’t plan on having them for 20 or 30 years. I hate the slaughter industry the horses would be better off shot in the head than to be trailered and tortured the way they are. We have seen so many horses at New Holland with eyes hanging out or in pain from colicking in the killer pens. I can’t imagine the conditions in those trailers or being transported in cramed conditions without food or water. I’m sure nobody is mandating that the horses have to have breaks to get out or to have water. It’s unfortunate that our senators are not horse people and they are greedy for money and pushed by these killer plants that do our ecomony no good. If you get a chance a read the article by a Texas Senator who says our state loses money when horses are slaughtered they ship them overseas and make millions of dollars but claim losses here. These individuals are sick and have have no morals and hopefully will rot in hell one day for all of the cruel things they have done. thanks for letting me vent.

  13. Kathy H
    January 18, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    This whole thing is just insane crazy..”The Tennessee Highway Patrol is still investigating whether the horses involved in the I-40 wreck had proper paperwork.” But they were reloaded to continue the hellride anyway? what if the papers aren’t in order..will they be turned away from presido’s C4 lot for a hellride back to “angel acres” ? Will they be impounded by any agency? or will they slip thru the cracks anyway to meet the brutal end they were purchased for by AA? This horse slaughter business is sick, twisted and demented…time after time incidents surface of regulation all aspects,transport,feedlot treatment,paperwork discrepancies,mishandling, improper use of bolt,environmental contamination..all this suffering so folks abroad can eat horse meat? Nothing anyone can say or write will ever convince Me that the foreign demand for horse meat is not what drives this entire industry..nothing. Banning Slaughter & transport to Slaughter for Human consumption is the only thing that will stop this industry .

    • V
      January 18, 2012 at 8:23 pm

      The only thing that may happen to them is they’ll get another slap on the wrist and maybe pay a fine. Bog deal. Not enough to keep the jerks from doing it again and again. Disgusting.

  14. Noelle
    January 18, 2012 at 5:50 am

    I Wish we could take Every horse breeder and force Them into those horrible trucks so they can witness first hand the immense Suffering these panic-stricken animals endure because of everyone’s lack of conscience!! How Quick the people who breed horses are to say how much they “Love” their horses and take so much “pride” in their breeding — they are just as quick to turn their head and pretend it’s no big deal that they just doomed their perfectly bred gorgeous young 4 year old to such unbearable suffering — How can we genetically engineer such fabulous animals but we can’t genetically engineer humans to have a conscience????

  15. Wendy
    January 18, 2012 at 5:49 am

    Just disgusting and horrific they way Horses are killed in Mexico for slaughter!

  16. AnnieB
    January 18, 2012 at 5:20 am

    Dorian Ayache and others like him must be stopped. He took the horses that survived that horrible wreck and reloaded them late in the night and refused media any further access to the horses! Reloaded and taken to Texas. He says they are going to a ranch in Texas to be “retrained” for riding. Truck driver goofed up and actually told the truth…the horses are headed to Presidio. The sides of the truck were boarded up so people passing the truck would no be able to see the horses inside. This is a dirty business carried out by criminally minded people. We MUST pass S1176 and HR2966. Get on your Senators and House Reps. FB pages, twitter, fax, email, make calls to them directly. Every decent American is needed to speak up.

    And folks…the last two years the number of horses going both north and south of the border has gone DOWN. Slowly dwindling after a peak in 2009. Experts knew this would happen. Slaughter would via the border would peak and breeders in the US would slow their breeding programs down and start THINKING about what they are doing breeding so many horses. Ban slaughter and transport to slaughter and I promise..the horse industry will turn back to a quality environment of THINKERS and PLANNERS and not just a bunch of greedy folks with slaughter for a trash can.

    • Barbara Joseph
      January 18, 2012 at 6:15 am

      I totally agree with you, AnnieB but we must find some way to also convince the pro slaughter people because they think, no matter what, the slaughter houses take the sick & old.
      Many won’t listen to the fact that those dead horses out in gullies & ditches are thrown out there by the slaughter houses.
      We need the media EVERYWHERE to get these facts or no one is going to listen. As long as pro-slaughter people think that we are dumpping our horses out to die nothing is ever going to ghange their minds. Any video that’s shown on the PC won’t convince people. I know because a life long friend told me those videos are all a crual joke, they are made up weather it’s our Mustangs being killed in roundups or a horse hangging by a chain or being hit by that bolt gun.
      I know this info. is difficalt to get but now it’s been proven so somehow the media needs to take it & run a series on it if they must.

      • C Fowler
        January 18, 2012 at 4:30 pm

        Sadly the Pro Slaughter People now this. Need I remind you that they are pushing for Selling Horse Flesh in the Markets. Also, Mexico does not use the captive bolt guns. They stab the horses in the spine to paralize them and actually gut and clean and process them alive. :( It is your BREEDERS,AQHA BLM, OTTB and PMU people who mass produce foals, manage the Mustangs (which they want to get rid of) and use the Slaughter Industry as a culling service. These are your Pro Slaughter supporters. They even want to serve horse flesh to our children in school lunches. Its the POWERS THAT BE on CAPITAL HILL who are getting their pockets lined (disguised as election contributions) from these sources. I could go on and on, but the bottom line is…..This Needs to be Made BOLDLY AWARE to ALL U.S. Citizens and we should be the ones allowed to vote on said issue. But like the bought off greedy cowards they are in the White House it will be kept away from the publics right to choose.

    • Lynn
      January 18, 2012 at 4:27 pm

      You are right. Currently breeding is going down but if they get the slaughter houses you better believe they will breed for slaughter. We will never get the excess down if slaughter houses are built. Breeders cannot sell their horses now so the only other choice besides breeding for quality not quantity, is to breed for slaughter. That is the only reason they are pushing so hard for the right to slaughter. Right now they are not making money on sending horses to slaughter because they have to transport long distances and the markets aren’t paying them enough. But if they control the killing here then they can make more profit. But will raising horses for slaughter still be profitable? That is the question. We all know how much it costs to take care of a horse. Add to that new regulations for drug use and registering horses. They will try to make American’s eat horse meat. This fight is not over and you had better get ready for some boycotts and protests if slaughterhouses open.

      • terri
        January 18, 2012 at 8:55 pm

        You are so right. I still want to k ow WHY these horses were not held as evidence in the investigations. This is just another example of WHY horse slaughter needs to be banned in this country try..and that vet..a courtesy call? Get real.

  17. shirley smith
    January 18, 2012 at 4:53 am

    This is a good reason we need to have SB 1176 and HR 2966 passed ASAP!! So we won’t have to ever have this happen again. Please everyone help be the voices of the horses and help get them passed, the horses are counting on us to help them.

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