MURRAY, Utah, March 25, 2023 (Gephardt Daily) — The Humane Society of Utah announced it will offer a $15,000 to the reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for killing two wild horse stallions shot on the Onaqui Mountain Herd Management Area in Tooele County.
A previous announcement listed a reward, offered by the Bureau of Land Management, Red Birds Trust and other entities, at $22,500 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the shooting death of the wild horses.
Together, those rewards add up to $37,500.
“Humane Society of Utah urges anyone with information regarding the shooting to call the BLM Utah Law Enforcement Tipline at 800-722-3998. Any tipster can choose to remain anonymous,” the HSU statement says.
The two stallions, named Jasper and Arshan by their human watchers, were shot and killed March 13 near the Simpson Springs Recreation Area, according to the Facebook post by Wild Horse Photo Safaris, a Tooele-based non-profit that leads tours of the Onaqui herd.
Jasper, who was white and brown, with blue eyes, and Arshan, who was brown and slightly smaller, had been companions the last four years according to the notice posted Wednesday evening on the crime and reward.
The pair had recently seemingly adopted a young sorrel colt named Junpei, according to the reward posting.
At last report, Junpei’s whereabouts were unknown.
“Harassing, capturing or killing wild horses is illegal and punishable by up to a year in prison and/or a fine,” said BLM West Desert District Manager Mike Gates in the released statement. “The BLM takes our responsibility seriously to protect these animals and is committed to holding accountable whomever is responsible for this unconscionable act.”
In 1971, the U.S. Congress passed legislation to protect, manage, and control wild horses and burros on the public lands. The Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act declared these animals to be “living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West,” the BLM statement continues. Congress further declared, “wild free-roaming horses and burros shall be protected from capture, branding, harassment, or death and that they are an integral part of the natural system of the public lands.”