Former Mustang Trainer Released on Parole

Jason Meduna, the former Nebraska rancher convicted on 145 animal cruelty charges involving the mistreatment of Bureau of Land Management (BLM) mustangs, has been released from prison on parole.

In April 2009 Nebraska law enforcement authorities and equine welfare agency personnel removed 209 malnourished mustangs from Meduna's 3-Strikes Ranch in Alliance. The removed animals were placed with Texas-based rescue Habitat for Horses and the Lifesavers Wild Horse Rescue in California for rehabilitative care. All were later placed in new adoptive homes.

Meduna was subsequently charged with 149 counts of class 4 felony animal abandonment and cruel animal neglect resulting in injury or death. In January 2010 Meduna was found guilty of 145 of the charges and was sentenced to serve not less than 40 months and not more than 120 months in prison. He became eligible for parole on Oct. 20, 2011, and on Oct. 26 the Nebraska Parole Board granted Meduna parole.

According to Nebraska Department of Correctional Services records, Meduna was released from prison on Dec. 6, 2011. Meduna was not available for comment.

Habit for Horses President Jerry Finch said the public remains outraged over Meduna's treatment of the animals in his care, but doubts that Meduna's further incarceration would be useful.

"No one will ever know the true number of horses that died while under the care of Jason Meduna, and (he) will never understand or accept any blame for that horror," Finch said. "To keep him locked up is a waste of tax dollars."

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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