Investigation underway after Marion County horse dies from gasoline injection



MARION COUNTY, Fla. - One horse is dead and another is seriously ill in Marion County after someone injected them with gasoline, according to officials.

The horses are from two farms next to each other in Belleview. One of them is Leah Greenleaf's 6-year-old spotted saddle horse named Kate.

"We have one horse that's dead. I still worry mine is not going to make it. I'm trying to keep positive that she is going to," Greenleaf said.

Kate became sick last week, around the same time that Greenleaf's neighbor John Hoogerhyde had to put down his horse named Jolean.

The veterinarians who came to their homes discovered somebody had given both animals what was meant to be a lethal injection.

"He said he never smelled anything like that before coming from inside an animal, and it smelled like gasoline. Which gave my vet the idea of taking the swollen area and pulling out a sample.  And when she did, that's when she smelled gasoline," Greenleaf said.

The Marion County Sheriff's Office said it's investigating both cases of cruelty, which are most likely connected.

Greenleaf rushed her horse to an equine hospital in Ocala. She said there have been good and bad days, and she's struggles back at home.

"The whole community is nervous as well about our other horses in the pasture. It's not only the concern for her, but other horses. Not sleeping well at night because you're wondering who did this and when are they going to strike again," Greenleaf said.

Anyone with information about the cruelty cases is asked to contact the Sheriff's Office.