Man pleads guilty to fire that killed 13 horses - WNEM TV 5

Man pleads guilty to fire that killed 13 horses

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Source: The Barn For Equine Learning Source: The Barn For Equine Learning
LOWELL TOWNSHIP, MI (AP) -

A man accused of setting a fire that killed 13 horses has pleaded guilty in western Michigan.

Prosecutors say Payton Mellema will spend three years at a mental-health facility under a plea deal reached Thursday in Kent County court. He lived near the Barn for Equine Learning in Lowell Township, where 13 horses died in April.

The horses were used as therapy for children and young adults with a variety of special needs.

Mellema pleaded guilty to arson and animal cruelty charges. He'll return to court on Oct. 31.

Mellema's charges were arraigned at the beginning of the month.

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