Horse theft is a crime that is alive and thriving in the U.S. today. Thousands of horses go missing each year. With the help of volunteers through Stolen Horse International (aka NetPosse.com), many horses are recovered. There is even hope for victims like Michelle Pool, whose horse was stolen almost 10 years ago.
Pool filed a report in March 2003 for Opie, her spotted American Saddlebred stolen from her father’s pasture on Highway 181 in San Antonio, Texas. Shortly after she reported the theft to Stolen Horse International, Opie’s webpage was put on the NetPosse website and NetPosse Alerts were sent to thousands of readers.
But Opie was not anywhere in sight.
As the years passed, Pool never quit thinking of Opie and wondering what happened to him.
“We got Sultan’s Modern Opus (nickname “Opie”) when he was just 16 monthsold. He came to live with us in Red Oak, outside of Dallas, and we loved him from day one,” says Pool. “I still remember having to explain [Opie's theft] to two small children and a teenager who loved him.”
After almost ten years, Pool and her children do not have to wonder anymore. On July 30, 2012, a tipster called Stolen Horse International to report an ad she’d seen on Craigslist. Interested in buying the horse, she first checked NetPosse.com to see if he was listed as stolen. He was. Upon receiving the news, Debi Metcalfe, president and founder of the nonprofit organization, found the Pools in Eureka Springs, Arkansas.
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