Pennsylvania Police Probe Alleged Horse Poisonings

Pennsylvania law enforcement authorities are hoping the public can help unravel a mystery surrounding the alleged poisoning deaths of nine horses in two of that state’s counties.

Lower Windsor Township Police Chief Tim Caldwell said that at 7 a.m. on March 22, his department received a 911 call from a man who reported that four horses at Allimax Farm had been poisoned. The caller identified himself as Joseph Meyer, the horses’ owner, the owner of Allimax Farm, and a Morgan horse breeder, Caldwell said. Police personnel responded to the farm and discovered the dead horses’ carcasses lying in a field, Caldwell said, but Meyer was not at the property.

“He said he was on route to Harrisburg,” Caldwell said. “Since then, all we’ve been able to do is leave business cards at the farm.”

On March 29, a man identifying himself as Joseph Meyer of Allimax Farm, appeared in a video posted on YouTube. In the video, Meyer says that a total of nine of his horses were poisoned in York and Lancaster counties. Meyer alleged that the poisonings were done by animal welfare activists, and that he and his family fled the farm for their own safety.

“Animal rights activists have been ganging up on my business because they don’t believe horses should be used for work,” Meyer said. “My family was threatened and we went to a safe place.”

In the video Meyer also alleged that whoever was responsible for the poisonings specifically targeted the horses used for breeding and riding at the farm.

“Whoever did this knew me and knew my operation,” Meyer said. “This was no accident.”

Meyer was unavailable for comment; calls to the telephone number listed on the Allimax Farm website were answered by a recording which said that the person connected to the number “was not accepting phone calls at this time.”

Caldwell said that one of the allegedly poisoned horses was taken to a state laboratory near Harrisburg for necropsy. The cause of the horse’s death remains uncertain, he said

“We're still waiting for some tissue sample analysis results,” Caldwell said.

But the cause of the horse’s death is just part of the mystery connected to the case, Caldwell said Police are not even sure that the caller and the man in the video are, in fact, Joseph Meyer.

“It looks like Meyer (in the video), but it wouldn’t be the first time someone looked like somebody else,” Caldwell said. “And anyone can make a phone call.”

Caldwell said that police personnel continue to investigate the circumstances connected to the alleged poisonings. Anyone with information about the case should call the Lower Windsor Township Police at 717/244-8055.

“There are a lot of questions about this case that need to be asked and answered,” Caldwell said.

About the Author

Pat Raia

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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