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‘They have no heart’: Answers sought in shooting of Chester family’s horse

Grey, a 13-year-old mare, had to be euthanized Saturday after someone shot the horse outside of a Chester County home. Kristy Sutton, pictured here with Grey, said the horse was like a member of their family.
Grey, a 13-year-old mare, had to be euthanized Saturday after someone shot the horse outside of a Chester County home. Kristy Sutton, pictured here with Grey, said the horse was like a member of their family. Photo submitted by Kristy Sutton

Maureen Moore wants answers – not just about who shot her horse in broad daylight over the weekend, but how someone could shoot an animal that was a member of their family.

“It’s not even a coldhearted person,” she said of the unknown shooter. “They have no heart.”

Moore said she and her niece were shopping Saturday but received an urgent call after someone apparently shot Grey, her 13-year-old quarter horse.

“My momma heard a gunshot, looked outside and saw Grey was down,” Moore said. Her mother is “83 years old. She runs outside and tries to get her up.”

The shooting happened about 2 p.m. Saturday on Pressley Road, according to the Chester County Sheriff’s Office. The horse had a small bullet wound on its left shoulder.

Moore said they called a vet on the way home. The horse’s shoulder was shattered, and the bullet also hit its spine. The animal had to be euthanized.

Moore said her niece, who rode Grey often, works for the veterinarian who euthanized the horse. “She had her head in her lap as she took her last breath,” Moore said.

“How can someone without a heart just shoot an animal? She’s laying in the yard, trying to get up. She can’t get up. There’s nothing you can do because someone that’s coldhearted decides to take the life of an animal that brings pleasure and is part of a family,” Moore said.

She said they have no idea who shot the mare, which she had for about nine years.

Kristy Sutton, Moore’s niece, said she and Grey had a “special bond.”

“I was the only one she tolerated,” Sutton said. “Mainly, if anybody was gonna be riding her, it was me.”

Sutton said her young son Grayson had grown attached to Grey and wanted to ride her alone in this year’s Lowrys Christmas Parade.

“He already had plans to ride her by himself this year,” she said. “He said he was kicking me off and doing it on his own.”

Deputies couldn’t find any shell casings. Moore’s brother Dennis, who buried Grey, said it appeared the perpetrator shot the horse from the roadway.

“It was not an accident,” he said. “It was apparently a high-powered rifle, but the vet couldn’t find the bullet in the horse.”

Maureen Moore said they lost not just a pet but a family member.

“She would follow you when you were working on the fence,” she said. “If you were in the yard, she’d put her head over the back of the chair. She’s not just a horse; she was a pet – a part of the family. She’d just neigh at you from across the pasture and come running, and now she’s not there anymore.”

No arrests have been made, and investigators have no leads on a suspect. Moore said they have other animals, including a second horse, on the property, and the shooting has forced them to make changes to how they keep them safe. They’ve kept animals, including horses, at the home before.

“I can’t believe somebody would do this,” Sutton said. “Why her? Why then? Why in general?”

Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to call the Chester County Sheriff’s Office at 803-581-5131.

Teddy Kulmala: 803-329-4082, @teddy_kulmala

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