Morrison couple pleads guilty to animal cruelty charges
MORRISON, Colo. — A Morrison couple who claimed to be running a horse rescue pleaded guilty to animal cruelty charges Thursday rather than proceed with a jury trail, according to the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office.
In May 2013, Jefferson County investigators and animal control officers executed a search warrant for the Morrison property of Gary Norman, 72, and Sandra Norman, 68, under suspicion for the mistreatment of horses.
Investigators said they found 18 horse in poor condition on the Normans’ property. On-site veterinarians said the horses were malnourished and had serious health issues.
The 18 horses were removed from the property, said officials.
The Normans were charged with animal cruelty and were expected to appear before a jury Jan. 27.
On Thursday, Gary Norman pleaded guilty to one count of animal cruelty and sentencing was set for April 11, during which he could face up to 18 months in jail and a $5,000 fine, said the release from the DA’s office.
Sandra Norman also pleaded guilty to one count of animal cruelty and was given a one-year deferred judgement and sentencing.
According to the release, Kelley Bliden, 43, and Kimberly Koontz, 41, were also charged with animal cruelty, but those charges were later dismissed.