Horse sanctuary owner in Camden County charged with animal cruelty

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Officials say the woman behind a Camden County horse sanctuary has been charged with several counts of animal cruelty following an ongoing investigation into the nonprofit.

On Friday, authorities executed a search warrant at Labrador Hill Equine Sanctuary in Waterford Township, which houses approximately 70 animals.

Sanctuary owner Sarah Rabinowitz, 62, was issued a court order mandating that immediate remedial measures be taken regarding insufficient water sources and inadequate shelter.

Rabinowitz was charged with 57 counts of fourth degree Causing Bodily Injury to a Living Animal or Creature by failing to provide necessary care. She was also charged with five counts of Animal Cruelty.

Ellen Strack, of South Jersey Horse Rescue, gained access to the property and described the conditions of the sanctuary in a Facebook post.

"I witnessed approximately 68 horses, donkeys and mules in terrible condition, with bones sticking out, huge maggot infested wounds, horses dragging their legs, bloody legs from fly bites. Scars from fly bites," the woman posted. "We asked if we could help with dinner and were told the horses don't get dinner."

Offers to help the animals went unanswered, according to Strack.

Rabinowitz was released with the mandated court order and is pending a future court date.

Law enforcement, the Department of Agriculture and the NJSPCA say they will be monitoring the situation daily. This is an ongoing investigation.