LARSON DAIRY UPDATE


On November 9, 2017, the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office received allegations from ARM (Animal Recovery Mission) regarding Animal Cruelty at the Larson Dairy Barn #5. A video of the abuse was sent to the Sheriff’s Office and was reviewed by Detectives.

An interview was conducted with Jacob Larson; who with his assistance, identified the subjects committing the abuse. Jacob Larson terminated 2 employees and suspended two other employees, after learning of the allegations. One of the suspended employees quit after suspension.

After reviewing the case with the Assistant State Attorney Ashley Albright, felony warrants for the following subjects for cruelty to animals were obtained:

Omar Jimenes Mendosa DOB 12-20-80

Two counts hitting an animal with rebar

Omar Guadalupe Mendosa DOB 6-28-88

Eight counts stabbing with rebar / stabbing with rebar / Pull cows leg with rebar / hitting with rebar / kicking / punching / kicking / kicking

Roberto Relles DOB 12-10-99 “Juvenile”

Four counts punch udder of cow / bending tail / hitting with rebar / kicking

The following subject was arrested for a misdemeanor charge cruelty to animals.

Helias Cruz DOB 12-15-67

One count kicking an animal

The investigation is currently on-going. Sheriff Stephen said of the investigation:

“This is an ongoing investigation. Detective Lieutenant Brad Stark has secured warrants for four individuals involved thus far. Unfortunately only one has been located and arrested. The other three individuals have fled to whereabouts unknown due to the lack of prompt reporting to Law Enforcement. At this time, ARM Founder Richard Couto and his employee, who had recorded the submitted video, have been requested to submit interviews at the Sheriff’s Office, but have failed to do so at the time of this release. The delay in reporting and lack of cooperation is significantly hindering this investigation and has already allowed responsible individuals to avoid prosecution. It is my hope that this will change moving forward.”

Nothing else to release at this time.

Michele Bell, PIO

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