LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A Las Vegas woman is facing animal cruelty charges after being accused of starving her three horses and keeping them in filthy conditions, according to an arrest report.
Hermalinda Rocha was arrested on Tuesday, May 10 for three felony warrants for willful or malicious torture/maim/kill a dog, cat, or animal. The alleged crimes were committed from 2018 to 2020.
The arrest report states Rocha boarded her three horses on Kell Lane, a property in northeast Las Vegas, near Nellis Boulevard and Owens Avenue. The owner of the property told investigators she only provided the boarding, Rocha was responsible for the feeding and care of the horses.
On Jan. 16, 2020, the three horses were removed from the property and taken to Desert Pines Equine Center for veterinarian care after an investigation by Animal Control showed the property owner had been cited on Dec. 7, 2019 but had still not corrected issues regarding the horses’ well-being. Each horse was 250 to 300 pounds underweight.
“Animal Control observed a large amount of manure and urine accumulating in the horse stalls. A closer look at all three horses’ hooves revealed they were overgrown and in need of care. Each horse stall had a bucket of water. The water buckets contained thick murky water with a buildup of Algae,” the report said.
One horse, who had been observed eating her own feces, eventually was euthanatized four months later due to continuing health issues.
Although the property owner claimed no responsibility for the care of the horses she also admitted she knew Rocha would neglect to feed the horses and clean the stalls. She only contacted Animal Control after she was cited to let them know Rocha owned the horses.
The report said there were several efforts to reach Rocha during the investigation but she never responded.
Rocha was arrested Tuesday in the employee parking lot of Valley Hospital. She was transported to Clark County Detention Center and booked on her outstanding warrants. She was released from jail on her own recognizance but ordered not to have any contact with animals. Her next court date is Aug. 9, 2022.