A Montana judge denied motions seeking the dismissal of animal cruelty charges filed against the owner of Kountz Arena. Dayle Kountz is accused of keeping his stallion alive without veterinary care, even after part of the horse’s leg fell off from an accident months prior.
Kountz is charged with aggravated animal cruelty and cruelty to animals related to the stallion named Young Doc Bar. He is also charged with a third count of felony animal cruelty after Kountz allegedly allowed a comatose calf to suffer. Kountz, who has a prior animal cruelty conviction, can only be convicted of two counts.
Found by horse show competitors at the defendant’s arena on March 28, 2015, the emaciated stallion with the bloody stump was laying on a scant bed of shavings with feces and urine. Young Doc Bar was first injured in December 2014, but documents state Kountz told investigators he kept him alive so he could collect his semen. During the three month period, part of the horse’s leg fell off.
Kountz’ defense mounted multiple arguments, including a lack of probable cause, in an attempt to get the animal cruelty charges dismissed. The court denied the motions stating there is at least a “mere probability” that the defendant abused the animals. Under Montana law, the state’s showing of mere probability is sufficient to establish probable cause against a defendant. To read the 30 page Order, click view case below.
Kountz is slated for trial April 18.