1-Adam-12, 1-Adam-12, Be on the lookout for a horse of interest in a bucket killing spree.  Answers to the name Charlie Brown.  He is 16.2 hands tall, dark bay.  Approach with caution as the suspect has a previous record…

Suspect:  Charlie Brown

Charge:  Homicide (unclear if it’s murder or “just” manslaughter)

Victim:  Feed bucket

Evidence:  A picture is worth a thousand words.  And it’s all the evidence we need in this case…

I wonder if Charlie doesn’t have an eating disorder, or some deep seeded anger management problem directed at the makers of his grain [tongue firmly planted in cheek].  In the last few months, he has destroyed three feed buckets.  I tried to be nice, and bought him one of those larger, slant front style buckets, so it would be easier for him to get his large Friesian-cross head into the bucket and get the last of his precious grain, oil, and supplements (I pay enough for the things, I damn sure want to make sure he actually eats them).

But the evidence is undeniable.  It starts with a missing chunk of the bucket’s lip.  Then there’s the vacant hook where the bucket should be hanging; the cavernous cracks down each side of the bucket; and occasionally, the presence of said bucket on the asphalt outside Charlie’s stall.  Fortunately, there hasn’t been a member of the barn staff in any proximity when he hurled the bucket over his stall door, so he doesn’t have any outstanding complaints for assault pending.

I can’t tell if he’s excited by his food, or frustrated that there isn’t more of it.  But whatever the motivation, the result is the same.  He rips his feed bucket off the wall and trashes it.  We don’t know if he’s stomping on it or sitting on it, but the result is the same.  Sad bucket…

The last time it happened, I got a text from a barn buddy telling me that Charlie had committed “feed bucket murder,” and lawyered up when she tried to question him about it.   Since I’m both judge and jury, and since Charlie has a rap sheet of previous offenses, and since we had a witness to this particular incident, the sentence came down — swift and hard.  Charlie is now the owner of a powder coated steel-framed bucket holder that bolts to the wall with 2″ wood screws, with a removable bucket insert to hold the actual feed.

When I showed up at his stall to put it up, he gave me a look that said, “Oh crap, I’m busted now!  Can’t I work out some sort of plea agreement?  I’m really cute!”  I wasn’t feeling generous, and offered no reduction in his sentence.  He stood aside compliantly, almost as if he was trying to convince me that it really wasn’t necessary to permanently mount his feed bucket on his stall wall.  I wasn’t swayed by his sad face and attempts to promise he wouldn’t do it again.  We’re on our third feed bucket, so I’m afraid his previous record will count against him this time.

Now that he’s serving his sentence, I’ll let you know if he makes a break for it.  If he does, I’m afraid the judge is gonna throw the book at him…
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