Yard owner fights off horse rustlers
A LIVERY yard owner is nursing a cracked rib and bruises after fighting off thieves who were trying to steal a horse in the middle of the night.
Leanne Evans’s elderly Labrador came to the rescue by sinking her teeth into one of the men while blows rained down on her mistress.
The thieves eventually gave up and fled empty-handed.
Leanne, who celebrated her 25th birthday yesterday, told the Standard: “I just can’t believe that I actually had to fight to get the horse back.”
She had taken her dogs out after 11pm on Monday and was checking the yard near Dauntsey before going to bed.
As she wandered up towards two more isolated stables she saw the silhouette of someone with a horse. At first she thought it was one of the horse owners, but then realising something was wrong she shouted at them to leave the animal.
“But they kept coming towards me,” she said. “I jumped the one who had hold of the horse and we ended up in a scuffle.” It was only then she discovered there was another man. “The next thing I know I’m being punched quite badly.”
Meanwhile, fiercely protective Shona, 11, who is usually docile and well-behaved, had leapt to the rescue of her mistress and sunk her teeth into one of the men.
“I just heard a lot of screaming and swearing, then I’m on the floor and they are running past me.” The horse, an elderly mare belonging to a customer, galloped off into the field.
Badly shaken, Leanne ran back to her home and told partner Matthew Laurence, 29, what had happened. “I told him what had happened but I didn’t need to explain because I was covered in blood.”
As she dialled 999 he ran out into the night in an attempt to chase the thieves, but they were already out of sight.
The couple then discovered the crooks had loaded up a wheelbarrow with stolen tack and left it ready to take with them.
Leanne was treated for a cracked bottom rib while the mare suffered an asthma attack believed to be brought on by stress.
Anyone with information is asked to call Malmesbury Police on 101.