GARRETT COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — The Humane Society of Garrett County is working to save farm-animals rescued from poor living conditions following the conviction of an Oakland-man on Animal abuse charges.

WVNews reports that thirty-five cows were seized from property owned by 65-year-old William Lee Gaither in the Swanton area.

“This is the largest bovine confiscation we’ve ever had,” Deb Clatterbuck of the Garrett County Humane Society said to WVNews. “There were 42 when we arrived, and 35 were able to be rescued. They were literally dropping dead in front of us.”

In a statement from State’s Attorney Lisa Thayer, Gaither was found guilty on 74 animal abuse charges last week, with a sentencing hearing scheduled for Dec. 17,

The cattle were confined to a small area fenced in between two mobile homes on Gaither’s 7.6-acre property.

Clatterbuck told WVNews, that the cattle were constantly escaping from the larger area because they were hungry and thirsty.

Gaither was charged and found guilty on 70 counts of failure to provide, and animal cruelty involving the cattle.

He was also charged with six counts, and found guilty on four, of animal cruelty and failure to provide for two dogs on the property.

Each charge carries a maximum 90-day sentence.

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