At least 15 horses have been fatally shot at a strip mine site in eastern Kentucky, authorities said.
The horses were found on a site along U.S. 23 near the Floyd-Pike County line, WYMT-TV reported Tuesday. A $500 reward is being offered for information on the shootings.
Tonya Conn with Dumas Rescue, an animal rescue group, said the dead horses were scattered over a large area and it appears they were hunted.
“Seeing them gunned down is … beyond horrific,” Conn said.
Authorities said some of the horses were young and some were pregnant.
“This is very inhumane and it’s a very cruel act of somebody who just apparently had nothing else to do or whatever just to go back on a strip job and shoot down horses who were, one of them obviously was feeding, had grass in its mouth,” Floyd County Sheriff John Hunt said. “It looked like a battlefield for just horses.”
Hunt said the person responsible could face animal cruelty charges at a minimum.