ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - A homemade video showing a New Mexico man killing a horse is gaining national attention and it has ignited a fire storm.
The video shows Tim Sappington walking what looks like a healthy horse toward a camera.
He even gives the horse a pat, but what happens next is disturbing.
Sappington looks at the camera and says, "all you animal activists, f*** you," then he proceeds to shoot the horse in the head, killing it.
"I think the video is disgusting and vile, its designed to en-flame," said Laura Bonar with Animal Protection of New Mexico.
Sappington is a self proclaimed horse-meat eater.
He also claims to be an employee at the controversial Valley Meat Company in Roswell.
The former cattle slaughterhouse is petitioning the USDA to become the country's only horse slaughterhouse.
In an email to News 13 the company's attorney confirmed Sappington has worked for Valley Meat as a maintenance man but he called his actions crass.
A sentiment the company's owner echoed.
"I don't condone that kind of stuff our company doesn't condone that kind of stuff, he did this on his own at his house I guess and so we had nothing to do with it," said Valley Meat's Owner Ricardo De Los Santos.
That hasn't stopped people from lashing out at the company and its owners over the video though.
De Los Santos said his phone has been ringing off the hook with people threatening him, his family and his business.
He played a voicemail for News 13 on it, a woman said, "I hope he gets hit in the head and kicked and his children all die of the plague."
The video was originally posted sometime last year but re-surfaced Wednesday, the same day news broke that the company was one step closer to getting an inspection by the USDA.
If they pass, that inspection would allow them to start slaughtering horses to export the meat to other countries.
It is an idea that many people are staunchly against.
"We've brought in a security company to come help us with security just to be around us and stuff cause we have work we have to do here," said De Los Santos.
In the meantime he said they have turned over the voicemails and other threats they've received to the authorities.
As for the video that sparked all this, News 13 learned Thursday afternoon the Livestock Board is now investigating Sappington because of it.
We tried tracking Sappington down to ask him about the video but did not have any luck.
The Chaves County Sheriff said at this point what Sappington did in the video does not appear to be animal cruelty because he put down his own livestock in a quick and painless way, for his own consumption.
However, the livestock board is looking for evidence of abuse against other animals or evidence that he was selling the horse-meat which is illegal.
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