Virginia man faces nearly 60 counts of animal cruelty

Larry Sams, who operates Cross State\'s Stable in Bristow, Va., has been arrested and charged with nearly 60 counts of animal cruelty. (Photo Courtesy Prince William County Police)

UPDATED May 7, 2014 6:25 p.m.: The Prince William County Humane Society says many of the animals taken from Cross State’s Stable in Bristow are available for adoption. For more information, visit the shelter’s website.

May 3, 3 p.m.:

WASHINGTON — A man who runs a local stable has been arrested and charged with nearly 60 counts of animal cruelty.

Larry Sams operates Cross State’s Stable in Bristow, Va. His daughter, Carolyn Sams, is charged with one count of animal cruelty. Their court date is set for June 3.

Sams says he has nothing to hide.

“Please come by. I ask all the public, which we open our farm to everyone, everyday,” he says.

Sams says he is being targeted. In May 2012 and in October 2013 he was convicted of “inadequate care of agricultural animals,” which is a class four misdemeanor punishable by a maximum fine of $250.

“This is why I’m saying they’re trying to close Nokesville down, because we’re selling to Muslims, Ethiopians, Africans, Mexicans. It’s an ethnic reason,” he says.

Sams sells live goats and lambs for religious sacrifices, and that is why he says officials are trying to shut him down.

After a tip that many animals at the farm looked emaciated and needed medial care, animal control officers inspected the property on April 14 and then returned with a search warrant. Sams was eventually arrested without incident, according to police.

Animal control officers seized 59 animals, which are now in the care of animal control. Most of the animals that were taken were rabbits and sheep.

Two horses were seized and one had a large infection on its neck says, a Prince William County police officer on the scene. Also, police report the stalls were covered with animal waste. A veterinarian, who accompanied police to the stables, was said to be very angry over the conditions at the farm.

Several of the small animals that were taken had to be euthanized because of their poor condition, police say.

On May 6, in civil court in Prince William County a judge will decide the fate of the animals that were taken if they will be returned to the Sams or be given up for adoption.

Follow @WTOP on Twitter and WTOP on Facebook.

Advertiser Content