Nelson Rapanot Jr., 23, of Kalae, was arrested by police Tuesday after admitting to the shooting of three horses and cow on the private ranch of Richard and Roxanne French in Kalae.
The shooting occurred between Feb. 7 and 8, 2012 at the property along Kalae Highway, said Captain John Jakubczak, commander of the Molokai Patrol District.
According to Jakubczak, one horse and the cow, both pregnant, were shot to death. Another horse, a stallion, had to be put down after a shot in its left leg shattered bone. He said a third horse, also pregnant, survived after suffering a bullet wound on the right side of its stomach.
The arrest was made following the investigation by Molokai Police Detective Jamie Winfrey, Jakubczak said. At the time of the incident, police were seeking leads from the community and asked the public to call Maui County Crimestoppers. In this case, though, it was just Winfrey developing good information.
“This was a detective doing a great job tracking down leads and talking to people,” said Jakubczak.
Jakubczak said Rapanot reported shooting the animals because he was upset after missing the deer he had been hunting.
The pregnant horse that was killed was valued at $25,000 and the cow was valued at $2,000. The stallion was valued at $40,000.
Rapanot was charged with four counts of first-degree criminal property damage, using a firearm in the commission of a felony, first-degree criminal trespassing, four counts of first-degree cruelty to animals and hunting on private lands.
The Maui News originally reported that bail was set at $154,000 but Jakubczak said the bail was reduced to $54,000. He went on to say that more information will be released from the Maui County prosecutor’s office as the case proceeds to court.