Miami police have arrested a man on charges of animal cruelty after he was found riding a horse from his home in South Carolina nearly 700 miles away.
Christopher Emerson, a 36-year-old from Greenwood, South Carolina, was arrested Wednesday after several passersby in South Florida noticed that Trigger, the horse on which he was riding, appeared to be in bad health.
Witnesses had called local animal rights advocates and complained about Emerson, ABC News reported.
Emerson embarked on his horseback journey over four months ago after having experienced ‘a rough patch with my wife, a divorce, and a wrecked truck.’
Christopher Emerson (above), 36, of Greenwood, South Carolina, was arrested on a Florida highway after passersby noticed the horse he was riding on was in poor health
The horse, Trigger (above), was found to be emaciated after a journey that stretched nearly 700 miles long
Upon reaching South Florida, Emerson was eventually picked up by police, and Trigger was found to be emaciated from the arduous journey.
The horse was discovered severely underweight and malnourished, according to WPLG-TV.
When questioned by police, Emerson said that ‘he did not have any money to feed his horse or himself.’
The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was outraged by Emerson’s actions.
‘The horse isn’t in any condition to travel that far,’ SPCA spokeswoman Laurie Waggoner told WPLG.
Emerson said the final destination of his journey was Key West, Florida, which is 724 miles from where he began – his hometown of Greenwood, South Carolina – by foot
When asked by police why Trigger was so thin, Emerson said that he did not have the money to buy food for either the horse or himself. Here the horse is seen on an SPCA horse farm
‘He is almost completing lacking in subcutaneous body fat.’
‘He has very little muscle. You can see the skeletal structure. You can feel all of his ribs. You can see the individual vertebrae, his hip bones and all the bones on the horse. His back is very sensitive. He gets very mad if you touch it because it is very sensitive for him.’
Trigger was taken to a horse farm near Miami, where veterinarians are examining him. He will likely remain there for several months.