Rachel Ann Sword, a 22-year-old resident of Westminster, finds herself facing serious felony charges following a disturbing case of animal cruelty that came to light last week. The Collin County Sheriff's Office arrested Sword on Friday on charges of cruelty to a non-livestock animal, classified as a third-degree felony, and cruelty to livestock animals involving physical abuse, a state jail felony.
The investigation into Sword's actions was initiated after landscapers, who were working on her property, stumbled upon the grim remains of several deceased horses. Prompted by the citizen complaint, the Collin County Sheriff's personnel, along with deputies and Collin County Animal Services, executed a seizure warrant on August 1st, enabling them to retrieve all living animals from Sword's property located on the 700 block of Graybill Road in Westminster, an unincorporated community situated east of Anna, Texas.
Details provided by the Collin County Sheriff's Office indicate that the condition of the horses' remains ranged from partially skeletonized with remnants of skin and fur to completely skeletonized, suggesting that the deaths were not recent occurrences. An arrest affidavit stated that the decay of the animals' bodies indicated a considerable amount of time had passed since their demise.
In a revealing interview with investigators, Rachel Sword reportedly attributed the ownership of the animals to her deceased husband, who she claimed had passed away approximately three weeks prior. Sword admitted to being aware of her responsibility for the animals' well-being following her husband's death. However, she alleged that she was engulfed in depression, incapacitating her ability to care for the animals properly.
Sword's bond has been set at $85,000, reflecting the gravity of the charges she faces.