Sheriff: No charges filed in Corolla wild horse death

Published 2:32 pm Monday, June 11, 2018

The Currituck County Sheriff’s Office says no charges will be filed after a driver struck and killed a wild horse in Corolla this weekend.

In a news release, the sheriff’s office said the driver is from Virginia Beach and was traveling near milepost 20.5 in Corolla when a group of four to five horses ran over the dune toward the water.

“One of the horses made contact with the driver’s side front tire,” the news release said. Weather conditions in that timeframe were foggy and visibility was low, according to the sheriff’s office.

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The driver told authorities he was traveling between 20 and 25 mph. The speed limit through the 4×4 area, at all times, is 15 mph.

The Corolla Wild Horse Fund, which manages the herd of about 100, said the mare appears to have died instantly. Her stallion stayed over her body all night, “even after she was covered by a tarp.”

The mare’s death is the first involving a vehicle since 2012, said Jo Langone, the fund’s COO.

The incident was reported to have occurred around 10:37 p.m. The release did not say who notified authorities, or when. The wild horse fund said they learned about the incident after “a friend of a friend was called,” Langone said. The group reported Sunday morning they were notifying the sheriff’s office.

“Please, please, please pay attention when you are driving on the beach at night,” the group said in a Facebook post said. “Slow down and expect that a horse could be on the beach or running over the dunes at any given moment.”

The Corolla Wild Horse Fund was still grappling with two other tragedies when this death occurred. On Friday, another horse suffered a fatal injury, possibly from a horse kick, in an incident they are still processing, Langone said.

And last week, a foal named Chris, who had been seriously injured by a stallion, had to be euthanized after infection set in.