Crime

Paso Robles woman accused of horse neglect has prior animal endangerment conviction

A Paso Robles woman has been charged with felony animal neglect for failing to give horses adequate food and water for as long as six days in rural California Valley, as temperatures reached more than 100 degrees. Eleven horses were seized from the property, the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office said Tuesday.
A Paso Robles woman has been charged with felony animal neglect for failing to give horses adequate food and water for as long as six days in rural California Valley, as temperatures reached more than 100 degrees. Eleven horses were seized from the property, the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office said Tuesday.

The Paso Robles woman accused of neglecting several horses, leading to one animal being euthanized, previously was found guilty of an animal endangerment citation.

A San Luis Obispo Superior Court commissioner in July 2014 found that Misty Marie Lambert, 43, left a dog unattended in a vehicle in Arroyo Grande in January of that same year, “under conditions that endangered the health and well-being of the animal.”

The court fined her $150.

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office Rural Crime Unit concluded its most recent investigation into Lambert on July 18, alleging 11 horses had been deprived of food and water for as long as six days in California Valley, left exposed in temperatures exceeding 100 degrees. One horse, a colt, had to be euthanized due to wounds resulting from dog bites.

Lambert, the former California Valley Community Services District director accused last fall of felony election fraud over her disputed residency in California Valley, kept the horses on the property in the 14000 block of Arvin Trail, the Sheriff’s Office said. Lambert was cleared of fraud charges earlier this year.

The sheriff’s office announced it was recommending charges of felony animal neglect to the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office.

Lee Cunningham, spokesman for the district attorney’s office, said the charges were received Monday and are under review.

“(The) potential sentence depends on what crime is ultimately charged,” Cunningham said.

Animal cruelty can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony punishable by 16 months to three years in county jail prison.

Andrew Sheeler: 805-781-7929, @andrewsheeler

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