Polk deputies searching for stolen horses, trailer from Winter Haven property

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Polk County deputies are trying to find a pair of horses that were stolen from a Winter Haven property.

Edward Gardner went to his pasture in the 2100 block of Crump Road on Wednesday, only to find the gate wide open. He called his wife Maria to deliver the devastating news.

“The horses aren’t here. Someone cut the lock,” he said. “And she started crying.”

Edward's 18-year-old gray quarter horse named Dollar and Maria's 25-year-old bay gelding quarter horse named Bill were nowhere to be found.

Investigators said at least one suspected entered the gated pasture sometime between 12:30 p.m. Tuesday and 4 p.m. Wednesday. The suspect loaded the two horses onto the Gardner's horse trailer and took off.

Detectives said the suspect also stole saddles, bridles, ropes and other supplies in the trailer, worth an estimated $20,000.

“Someone who would do that, I can’t even imagine that person, what they would be like,” Edward lamented.

For the Gardners, their loss is more than just financial. They consider Bill and Dollar members of the family.

“He was like a dog. He would follow me around,” Edward said of his horse, Dollar. “My horse would get behind me and encourage me to go faster."

The stolen horse trailer is described as a gray-colored 3-horse slant, steel structure with a tack room on the front and Florida tag 739 NPH.

Anyone with information is asked to call Polk County Detective Scarborough at 863-860-7731. Anonymous tips can be submitted to Heartland Crime Stoppers by calling 1-800-226-8477 or online at www.heartlandcrimestoppers.com.