HAWKINS COUNTY, Tenn. - An investigation is underway in Mount Carmel, Tennessee after a horse was found dead and police say four others are starving and neglected.
The owner of the horses, Henry Bailey, is a former alderman in town and says he was paying his grandson to take care of the animals. "I had the hay in the barn, everything there with all the intentions of feeding them. It's just I got let down by my grandson," adds Bailey.
Bailey says April 3 was the last time he wrote a check for horse feed, but he's not sure why the horses were not actually fed. "Let's put it this way, he was supposed to of bought feed," he said.
Now the four horses are in the care of Mustang Alley Horse Rescue in Greene County. A volunteer at Mustang Alley says on a scale of 1-10 the horses are all rated one, being in the worst condition and possibly days away from death.
Bailey says physical limitations kept him away from the horses. "As long as I was able to feed them, I fed them. That's all I can say. As long as I was able to and it got to the point I couldn't feed them," he said.
Police have charged Bailey with five counts of animal cruelty. He has a court date set for April 22.
We've learned this isn't the first time Henry Bailey is facing this type of charge. Bailey admits he had similar charges about five years ago in a case connected to some cows he owned.