Dual Peppy days after the horses were seized (top) and when he was found (bottom).
A Colorado judge issued a gag order restricting officials from discussing the animal cruelty case against Sherri Brunzell.
Judge Stephen Sletta issued the order Wednesday for law enforcement officials, the district attorney’s office, court staff, the defense attorney’s office, and the Humane Society, according to the clerk of the court. Brunzell’s defense attorney, Andrew Bryant, filed the motion to limit the pre-trial publicity.
Judge Sletta denied Bryant’s request for a change of venue.
Brunzell is charged with a single count of cruelty to animals – a class one misdemeanor. Her alleged crime has drawn widespread outrage due to its gruesome nature. The Black Forrest cutting horse breeder is accused of keeping neglected horses among the decomposing remains of 14 equines.
According to court documents, Brunzell told authorities the horses died of colic. The equines’ bones were necropsied, but the causes of death have not been released.
Ten horses and four llamas were seized from the property in late September. Included in the group was the famous American Quarter Horse stallion, Dual Peppy. Brunzell reportedly purchased the stallion and a group of mares for more than $1.5 million.
Brunzell was recently ordered to pay $5400 monthly for her animals’ feed and care while they recover at two rescues. She paid her October bond. The court ordered the allotted funds be released to the Humane Society during today’s hearing.
A pre-trial conference is scheduled for December 17th.