County horse farmer, 72, charged with animal cruelty

EVERETT — Prosecutors have charged a 72-year-old Snohomish County farmer with animal cruelty after he allegedly starved his herd of horses and failed to provide them with proper care and shelter.

Philip J. Roeder was charged earlier this month in Snohomish County Superior Court with first-degree felony animal cruelty and second-degree animal cruelty.

County animal control officers for years have been trying to get Roeder to take better care of his horses, court papers show. They served a number of search warrants in recent months as they built a criminal case against him.

One of the horses, a thoroughbred gelding, was taken from Roeder in May because the animal needed emergency medical care.

That horse now is being cared for at a rescue operation in Woodinville, said Vicki Lubrin, the county’s licensing and animal control services manager.

Roughly a dozen other horses remain at Roeder’s property along E. Lowell-Larimer Road near Everett.

Prosecutors have asked the court to ban Roeder from keeping animals while the case is in court proceedings. That discussion likely will be part of his arraignment, set for next week.

Roeder didn’t fight the seizure of the gelding, so it now belongs to the rescue organization, Save a Forgotten Equine.

The horse has been nicknamed “Portland” by rescue staff, Executive Director Bonnie Hammond said. Research showed the animal was a winning racehorse for years in Oregon. His racehorse name was “Rose City Special.”

The horse is being fed a special diet and has a constant supply of hay, Hammond said. His ribs, backbone and hip bones still stick out.

“He’s a real sweet horse, but he is very, very thin. He is very sad. He seems kind of depressed,” she said. “We’re hoping that once he starts feeling better and regaining his strength that he will perk up.”

The rescue group is working with the animal control officers.

“We sincerely appreciate their willingness to step up and help,” Lubrin said.

For information about donating to Portland’s care, contact SAFE at www.safehorses.org or 360-692-3611.

Roeder has no known criminal history.

Rikki King: 425-339-3449; rking@heraldnet.com.

More in Local News

Herald photos of the week

A weekly collection of The Herald’s best images by staff photographers and… Continue reading

John Miller, congressman, author activist, has died

He was known for his dedication to the marine industry, energy and human rights.

Church takes a quiet, contemplative approach to worship

Alternative services at First Congregational Church of Maltby offer “a good deal of silence.”

Funds up for council vote would aid conservation district

District stands to receive an extra $1 million each year, if the County Council gives its approval.

Snohomish County hosts its annual Focus on Farming conference

The event features a trade show as well as talks on agriculture, jam-making and more.

Supportive housing for man accused in attacking his mother

Mental state impaired man’s ability to appreciate the wrongfulness of his actions, judge rules.

Lynnwood mayor challenged by councilman in general election

Three City Council members also are facing challengers on the Nov. 7 ballot.

‘Horrific’ child-porn case: Former Arlington man sentenced

Raymond Devore, arrested in 2015, had a cache of disturbing photos and video on his cellphone.

500 tires go up in flames at a store south of Everett

There were no injuries. And it was nowhere near as bad as that months-long tire fire in 1984.

Most Read