"Harry the horse is OK, but 'a little shy,' after shooting"
June 11, 2008 · Updated 11:31 AM
"Alert, intelligent and curious, Harry watched as a visitor approached his pasture on Holland Road.The 6-year-old bay Arabian gelding belonging to Elizabeth Neal even listened politely as the visitor attempted to make conversation and offer sympathy, and a rub his white-blazed nose.But he would have none of that, backing off skittishly and ambling across the small valley to keep watch from a grassy hill across the way.Harry has been a little shy of people since a 16-year-old Olympic High School student allegedly shot him in the side with a .22 caliber rifle May 29, while Harry was in his pasture, said Neal.According to Neal, the Kitsap County Sheriff's deputy who investigated the incident said the boy told him he did it to see the horse run.The boy was charged with first-degree animal cruelty and second-degree possession of a firearm, or possession of a firearm by someone younger than 18 years old. Both are felonies. If convicted of the animal cruelty charge, the boy could face a maximum of 30 days in juvenile detention, a year of probation, 152 hours of community service and a $500 fine, as well as possible restitution.The boy's attorney, Mark Randolph of the Port Orchard law firm Wecker-Hunko, and Kitsap County Deputy Prosecutor Greg Hubbard are scheduled to meet June 14 to discuss whether the boy will plead guilty or go trial.Meanwhile, Harry is doing well, though the small swelling around the bullet hole on his side has Neal a little concerned.A three-inch wide, 10-inch long track of shaved hair along Harry's left side follows the path of the bullet.Neal's veterinarian treated the wound, but said there were some unidentified fragments still within. But since Harry was doing well, Neal opted not to have surgery to remove the small pieces.It's also too expensive, about $3,000, she said. But she added that the boy's mother said the family would pay for it. The boy's mother also made her suspect pay the initial $311 vet bill.His mom's been pretty good. They're very disgusted with him, Neal said.The bullet apparently ricocheted when it entered Harry's belly, and went forward along his ribs toward his front leg, missing vital organs, Neal said. She and two girls who lease Harry have been treating him with antibiotics.He gets several pills twice a day, and the girls - 16-year-old Sonya and her younger sister, Tina Warden - clean Harry's wound.Neal praised the two for their attentive care. They're so good to him. He's spoiled, she sad.He doesn't like me too well right now, because she'd brought the vet, Neal said.Neal learned of the shooting when Ken Pahrman, who owns Harry's pasture, called her.Ken was (working on) the fence line when a lady came up to him and said she heard a rumor that a kid at (Olympic High) was bragging about shooting a horse, she said.Then Pahrman saw a little bit of blood trickling down Harry's side.Deputy Chris Andrews took Neal's incident report and tracked the rumors to the boy, arresting him at the school May 30.The boy already has felt the impact of the 1992 Pasado's law, which upgraded first-degree animal cruelty from a misdemeanor to a class-c felony.Hubbard said the law was named for Pasado, a donkey in a Bellevue petting zoo who was brutally beaten and strangled by three young men, one of them a 16-year-old.Animal rights activists lobbied the state Legislature to toughen the animal cruelty law because of the incident. "