Family searches for answers after horse found shot

EAGLE, Idaho (KBOI) - An Eagle family is asking for you help to find the person who shot and killed their horse, Rocket, Saturday.

Ada County Sheriff said the horse was shot once in the shoulder between 12:45 p.m. and 1:15 p.m. Saturday. Deputies are investigating the shooting, and said they believe it was done intentionally.

Devon Smith was just five years old when he got Rocket. He said the big, beautiful white horse was a part of the family.

"When you have an animal, you're there for its first moment of life, you feed it, you name it, you take care of it for nineteen years, and then watch it die in front of you," said Smith. "Like I said, it's not the same as a human or a child, but it's close."

The Smith family said they thought the horse was just sleeping in the snow like normal Saturday, but when he didn't move for quite awhile, they went to check on him and realized he had been shot. According to the equine vet, Rocket lost too much blood and was in shock, making it impossible to save him.

"He didn't hit the ground dead," said Smith. "He laid on the ground in the cold snow for six hours, by himself."

Deputies investigating said the position of the horse and type of wound he suffered makes it unlikely that someone shot and killed the horse accidentally. The Smith family and neighbors said they have never heard of anything like this happening in the area before.

"We've live out here almost 30 years and nothing like this has ever happened," said Bob West, a neighbor of the Smith's. "We get a few wild animals, a few wolves and mountain lions once in a while, but generally no malicious activity like this."

Now Devon Smith and his family say they just want some questions answered.

"I would just like to know what happened," said Smith. "If it was an accident, I just want to know that. But if it was just some drunk shooting up in the mountains, I'd like to know that too."

If anyone has any information on this, you're urged to call Ada County Dispatchers at 377-6790.