Organization seeks to remove more than 50 animals from man on 10 counts of animal cruelty

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) – The Companion Animal Protection Society has filed court documents to remove more than 50 animals from Kevin Vesterberg, who has been charged with 10 counts of animal cruelty.

The Companion Animal Protection Society said Thousand Oaks, a California-based partner, has filed a lawsuit seeking possession of sheep, goats and rabbits in the care of Kevin Vesterberg, of Miltonvale, on the property of his father, Virgil Vesterberg.

Kevin Vesterberg was charged on June 4, 2021 with 10 counts of animal cruelty for neglecting more than 50 animals on his property, owned by his son.

According to CAPS, the preliminary hearing for Vesterberg has been postponed twice and is now scheduled for August 24. Deputy Sheriff Russ Thornton told CAPS Kansas manager Debbie Miller that the sheriff’s office had no plans to remove any of the animals from the property, although they did not believe veterinary care had been taken. been provided. Under Kansas Section 64, subsection 21-6412 (e), law enforcement agencies, veterinarians, incorporated relief companies, shelters, and other appropriate animal care facilities are permitted to take care of animals when evidence of cruelty is available.

On May 24, CAPS said Deputy Sheriff of Ottawa Co. Tyler VanCoevern responded to his complaint that the animals were in a state of gross neglect on one of the Veterberg properties, located within 3 miles of his home.

According to the organization, more than 50 animals, including three rabbits, have been seriously neglected. He said there were also emaciated sheep and goats, a sheep with hooves over a foot long, a sheep with a bloody prolapse, several limping animals and a rabbit with an oozing eye infection. He said dozens of sheep and goat remains have been found in various states of decay throughout the property, with countless bones indicating long-decayed animals. He said food and water were not available for live animals.

On June 4, CAPS said Vesterberg had been charged with 10 counts of animal cruelty. He said that despite the many corpses and skeletal remains on the property, there are no charges for the dead animals, which likely perished from starvation, dehydration and untreated illnesses and infections. He said he will send any animals that can be removed from Vesterberg’s property to Gentle Barn Sanctuary in California or Tennessee, where they will receive the proper veterinary care and live the rest of their lives in peace.

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