On Friday, Sept. 22, the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office said that an Irish Sport Show Horse had been shot.
An investigation led by the Cherokee Marshal’s Office ensued. Owners of the horse offered a reward of $15,000 for information leading to the arrest of the suspect.
But on Wednesday, almost a week later, the Cherokee’s Marshal’s Office has determined that a suspect doesn’t exist — at least not a human one. The horse wasn’t shot.
Toby, the 8-year-old slain horse, suffered a depressed skull fracture from a blunt object. Authorities say an investigation reveals that the “most likely” scenario leading to Toby’s death was that he had his head at ground, grazing, and was kicked in the head by another horse at The Stables at Union Hill.
The Marshal’s Office said that Toby’s injury resembled a gunshot wound and led investigators to believe he was shot and killed. Following a scene investigation, interviews and a necropsy, authorities determined he suffered accidental blunt force trauma to the head.
A release from the Marshal’s Office says the owners of Toby would like to express gratitude to the University of Georgia Veterinary Division and the members of the community that provided and extended their support during the investigation.