The Southwest Ranches Town Council unanimously approved a new law Thursday night that implements the most stringent penalties in the state against anyone who harms a horse.
To make their point, a horse was brought to the meeting.
Under the law, anyone caught killing, maiming, mutilating or causing harm or permanent disability to a horse would face a maximum $5,000 fine and up to one year in jail.
Southwest Ranches, known for its horse trails, equestrian parks, ranches and farms, implemented the law after Marco, a former thoroughbred racehorse, was stolen from his home and slaughtered for his meat this summer.
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“This law is very good and at the same time it brings back his memory,” said Suso Sangiao-Parga, Marco’s owner. “If someone is capable of doing that to an animal, the next step is a human being. The law is even too lenient, it should be harder.”