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Heber horse update: Arizona photographer says she caught suspect shooting at wild horses near Heber

Posted at 10:59 PM, May 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-16 17:13:26-04

HEBER, AZ — "What the heck is going on in Navajo County?" That is the question a amateur photographer is asking after coming uncomfortably close to gunfire.

Kathie Reidhead says she saw a man shooting at wild horses on the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest.

The horses are supposed to be federally protected, but 19 of them have been killed since October, 11 confirmed shot.

The Forest Service is leading the investigation into the wild horse killings.

Reidhead says she was out photographing a herd the morning of May 2, when she heard gunfire.

Scared, she at first ducked behind a log, but then, fearing a bullet would hit her, she revealed herself to the man who she is confident was shooting at the horses.

Reidhead reported it to 911 and a Navajo County deputy responded. A police report obtained by ABC15 reveals the man told the deputy that he was shooting at a tree stump and the case was closed.

But Reidhead says she has 166 photographs and 6 videos documenting the incident. Yet, no one from the Forest Service has followed up with her, or responded back to her emails offering to provide investigators information and assistance.

ABC15 asked Forest Service spokesperson Steve Johnson why Reidhead has not been contacted.

Johnson said that because the Navajo County investigation was closed, the Forest Service considers it unrelated to the on-going horse shooting investigation, and therefore it was not necessary to contact Reidhead.

Reidhead asking, "its great that we have a law protecting these horses, but what good is a law if its not being enforced?"