Debbie Palmer

Hoarding - 50+ horses seized

Vidalia, LA

Feb. 2006

  Hoarding - animals at large, 1 horse killed Vidalia, LA Jan 8, 2006

Animal cruelty charges against Debbie Palmer were dropped (for the Feb, 2006 case) by District Attorney John Johnson on Wednesday, July 13th.  At that time he stated his intention to re-file and start a complete investigation.  DA Johnson will prosecute this case himself.

Arrested in February on cruelty to animal charges, Palmer was to be tried on Thursday, July 14thJohnson stated he dismissed all charges that exist at this time and the trial will begin at a later date. Presiding Seventh District Judge Leo Boothe granted the motion with no objections were received from Palmer’s attorney.  Judge Boothe ordered the Sheriff’s Department to constantly supervise the well-being of the horses until the case is resolved.

Concordia Animal Welfare Animal Control Officers served Palmer with a warrant in early April. She spent one night in jail.  Judge Boothe found Palmer guilty on April 12th, on three charges of animals at large which involved incidents on U.S. 65/84.  One incident ended with an SUV hitting and killing a horse on January 8th.  Following warrants officers removed some of Palmer’s approximately 50 horses from her care.  In May, Judge Boothe ordered the horses seized from her to be returned pending the outcome of a May 24 hearing.

This trial dismissed 10 charges of animal cruelty and one charge of simple criminal damage to property.

DA Johnson stated that the statute under which Palmer was convicted in the first three charges does not call for jail time – a fine and/or community service is a likely penalty.  Based on his perception of a definite pattern of abuse which he will review, he stated that more charges are expected to arise into the continuing investigation.

The Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry will now be asked to lead the new investigation.

Update 5/25/06:

Palmer lives at 930 Eagle Rd, Vidalia. The April 26, 2006 hearing was held without the knowlege of the Concordia Animal Welfare Shelter Rescue. None of the evidence provided by the rescuers was presented at the hearing. No bond was required despite LA RS 14.102.2 and Concordia Parish Ordinace .703.69b. and the evidence was returned to Palmer. Per court order the horses are to be returned to Palmer.

Update 7/3/06:

Mrs. Palmer has removed at least 5 of the most thin horses observed earlier in the week when CAW viewed the bodies of 2 horses.

Update 7/12/06:

DA John Johnson is taking over the Palmer case from ADA Magoun. The DA has asked Joey Norman of the Dept. of Agriculture, Livestock Commission to take over the investigation. The overseeing of the well being of the horses is now the responsibility of the Sheriff's dept. per order of Judge Leo Boothe.

Reference:

Concordia Animal Welfare Sheter Rescue (CAWS)

The Natchez Democrat