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Horse dismembered in Kessler Park reportedly stolen from KCK

horse remains found in kessler park
Posted at 10:46 AM, Apr 02, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-06 13:05:56-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City, Missouri, police investigators said Saturday that the dismembered horse discovered in Kessler Park on Monday was reportedly stolen from Kansas City, Kansas.

KCKPD will now be handling the investigation. No other details were released.

Kansas City, Missouri, officials confirmed pieces of a dismembered horse were found on a disc golf course Monday night.

After receiving a tip from a man playing disc golf, a horse’s head, hooves, spine and rib cage were discovered near the 17th hole of the Kessler Park Disc Golf Course located on Cliff Drive.

"Never found anything like this," said Alan Ashurst, an illegal dumping investigator for the city.

Investigators found a trash can nearby, which they believe was used to carry the parts.

There was no torso found. Animal Control officials told 41 Action News that whoever dumped the remains may have eaten the meat.

"What’s concerning to us is there’s no other meat at this location, so I don’t know what usage has taken place but this is not a normal situation," said James Donovan, a special investigator with Animal Control.

The city and Animal Control are investigating the incident as animal cruelty and illegal dumping.

The city said it has received reports of missing horses, so officials are holding onto the body parts for an investigation. The parts are being transferred to the Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine for a necropsy.

"This is the one and only time I've ever been called in to this location for any sort of dumping," Ashurst said.

City officials are working with police to check if nearby cameras captured the suspect.

It is illegal to dump an animal inside city limits.

Normally, the city’s 311 line will get calls for dead dogs and cats, and the city will come collect the animal for free and cremate it at the animal shelter.

In this situation, however, the city would not pick up a horse, and if city staff responded to a property with a dismembered horse, they would likely start an investigation.

Many times when a horse dies, the owner will bury it on their land. Missouri regulations prohibit anyone from burying an animal within 300 feet of any water source or neighboring properties.

Rolling Acres Pet Cemetery said rendering plants won't take dead horses from properties anymore because they're considered pets, and some are euthanized with chemicals or medications.

Using a pet cemetery to cremate or bury a horse can cost anywhere from $750 to more than $3,000.

"It's very uncommon to come to a city park and find these items being discarded not by normal means necessary," Donovan said.