An East Hampton woman is facing animal cruelty and torture charges, alleging she brutally abused horses in her care, including, according to the warrant, using a horse collar. electric shock and mutilating or cruelly beating or unnecessarily injuring an animal.
Alexis Wall faces up to 20 animal cruelty charges from 2021 after she allegedly abused horses at White Birch Farm in Portland, where she previously worked as a trainer.
Horse owners said they saw physical evidence on their horses of injuries allegedly at the hands of Wall: some were bleeding from the mouth, some with golf ball-sized marks on the sides from use alleged excessive spurs by Wall, bleeding on the legs where metal chains had been used to bind them, large patches of hair missing from the sides, according to the warrant affidavit. An owner reported that a palomino stallion propped up next to his horse was wearing an electric shock collar on his neck.
The complaints came first by anonymous email and then by a phone call from a horse owner who had previously boarded her horse at White Birch Farm.
The owner said he saw several horses under Wall’s training subjected to “cruel punishments such as withholding food and water, tethering for long periods of time, excessive use of spurs and being ridden harshly for long periods of time. “, according to Wall’s arrest warrant. .
During a visit to the farm to investigate, state animal control officer Tanya Wescovich spoke to another horse owner, who at the time had boarded her horse at the closed. According to the warrant, the woman told Wescovich she had seen horses being abused — tied up for hours without food or water, bleeding from the mouth after being ridden, or having their heads tied so tightly they couldn’t right themselves. their neck. Some were excessively whipped, she said.
The woman initially said she would be ready to make a statement once she moved her horse to another barn because she was afraid Wall would retaliate, according to the warrant.
She and other horse owners, some of whom also said they had their horses removed from White Birch Farm due to horse care concerns, provided witness statements detailing the abuse they allegedly witnessed.
The farm is owned by Amy Rader Wimler.
A horse owner gave a written statement at the end of June in which she described several instances where horses were allegedly mistreated, one in which the animal was overworked so that it looked “panicked and had a “hoarse breath,” after which Wall continued to ride. The next day she saw the horse lying in its stall, the warrant said.
Often between February and March, Wall encouraged students to ride near a horse named Checkers, which was tethered in the indoor arena, a horse owner told Wescovich, according to the warrant. Sometimes the horse was hobbled (when two legs are tied together). Twice, one horse owner reports, she saw Checkers panic and fall to the side. Another horse owner reported seeing “Wall riding his horse into him and beating him with his reins at the same time,” the warrant said.
Wall reportedly left another horse, Gilly, fully pinned down in the arena with the reins tightly tied to his saddle so his head was tucked to the side. An owner said the horse had been left like this for at least two hours and “appeared to be in distress…constantly shaking his head and pulling against the reins,” the warrant said. This owner said she could “see the whites of her eyes and the horse broke a board in the fence in the area trying to rub the bridle/saddle”. Wescovich noted in the warrant that “leaving an animal tied in a manner that does not allow freedom of movement could result in stress or damage to muscles and tendons.”
An owner also described a video she allegedly saw of a horse named Ocho in which her reins were tightly tied to the horn of the saddle, forcing her nose to stay close to her chest, according to the warrant. The owner reportedly said the horse appeared to be in respiratory distress, out of breath and covered in sweat” with “a pinkish colored foam around its mouth” and its tongue appeared “bluish/purple”. The owner said she heard a voice in the video say, “Watch out, he might pass out” before Wall appeared holding the lead rope that was tied to the horse, according to the warrant.
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Ocho’s owner wrote in a statement that Ocho’s behavior changed once Wall started working with him. This owner claimed that when her horse was tied to the wall Wall would physically ram the horse she was riding into her horse and use a whip to get it moving and that under Wall’s training she began to notice cuts and injuries to his horse and the use of more aggressive bits in his mouth.
On February 26, Ocho fled from Wall’s custody and Rader-Wimler informed the owner that he wanted to use a “jail method” on Ocho – meaning “would be tied with the chain to an isolated wall, dark and unique located inside. arena without food or water for 24 hours without other horses around,” the warrant said. Ocho’s owner said she asked what would happen if they didn’t get the desired results and were told they would continue for another 48 hours. According to the warrant, the owner said she told them not to perform the procedure on her horse.
Rader-Wimler confirmed that all of the horses mentioned in the warrant were in training with Wall during his employment at White Birch Farm and that Wall worked frequently with Ocho.
Rader, according to the warrant, described Wall as a “true Vaquero” (cowboy or cattle driver in Spanish) and said “you had to have a specific training philosophy to understand the training methods used by her.”
In the warrant, Wecovich, who has 20 years of personal experience in training and caring for horses, said: “acts of so-called training in which an animal is put in a position to cause pain, left in a position for an extended period of time that will cause excessive muscle/tendon strain, physical harm to the animal, or mental torture is inhumane and not accepted by any respectable equine organization and constitutes acts of cruelty towards animals, according to (state statute) CGS 53-247a.
Wall faces two counts of overexertion, two counts of failing to provide proper drink, seven counts of mutilating or cruelly beating or wrongfully injuring an animal and nine counts of torture.