$5K Reward in Martinsburg Horse Strangulation Case

- WHAG NEWS - The Humane Society of the United States based in Washington, D.C. is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of the alleged teenagers responsible for trespassing on a local Martinsburg farm and strangling the owner's horse with a towing strap. 

As we've reported, on Monday, July 21, 2014 a neighbor reported seeing two teenagers trespassing on Kija Wilson's farm along Shepherdstown Road and running away from where Wilson kept her retired and blind in one eye, polo horse, Catnip. Catnip was later discovered with the strap so tight around her neck it had to be cut off with a razor. 

Catnip's throat and tongue were so swollen, making it difficult to breathe. Catnip was euthanized on Wednesday, July 23 due to her severe injuries. 

Officials with the Humane Society of the United States said getting the attention of law enforcement, prosecutors and the community in cases involving allegations of cruelty to animals is an essential step in protecting the community.

They state the connection between animal cruelty and human violence is well documented. Studies have shown a correlation between animal cruelty and all manner of other crimes, from narcotics and firearms violations, to battery and sexual assault, they said. 

The Humane Society of the United States said they hope their reward will help find the persons responsible for this act of cruelty and give Catnip's owner some piece of mind. 

Anyone with information on this case is asked to call the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office at 304-267-7000 or the Berkeley County Crime Solvers at 304-267-4999. 

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