California Riding Magazine • September, 2009

Poisoning Attempt
in Rancho Santa Fe
$12,500 reward offered for any
information on who poisoned
Rockridge Farm’s 23 show horses.

by Cheryl Erpelding

Bill Tomin with one of the recovering poisoned Saddlebred horses.

In the early morning hours of July 30, someone snuck into the gated Rockridge Farm in Ranch Santa Fe and fed 23 American Saddlebred horses oleander leaves mixed with carrots and apples. Farm owners Debbie and Bill Tomin were shocked to find the horses with the toxic leaves in their stalls. Three of the horses had to be hospitalized and all are expected to make a full recovery with no permanent damage to the heart. All three horses are now home after treatment at San Luis Rey Equine Hospital.

Whoever did the deed was able to go undetected in the middle of the night. Six people live about 25 feet behind the barn and next to the broodmare paddocks. Twenty horses in the barn and three broodmares in the paddocks were fed the harmful concoction.

The Tomins’ have offered a $10,000 reward to find the culprits. The San Diego Humane Society has also added $2,500 to the offer. Tomin stated that Crimestoppers also adds $1,000 if the person calls in through their service.

The Tomins’ thank all that have shared their concerns. They are in the process of installing surveillance equipment to deter any further criminal behavior. Call San Diego County CrimeStoppers at 888-580-8477 or e-mail rsfsickhorses@gmail.com if you have any information that might help find who did this cruel crime.