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Two South Range residents face charges in 'Windchill' case

Two South Range residents have been charged with neglecting "Windchill," the 9-month-old colt found near death on their Douglas County farm earlier this month.

Two South Range residents have been charged with neglecting "Windchill," the 9-month-old colt found near death on their Douglas County farm earlier this month.

Douglas County Assistant District Attorney Rebecca Lovejoy said Pam Javenkoski is charged with failure to provide food to a confined animal and failure to provide shelter, both Class A misdemeanors. Shane Javenkoski, whom Pam said is her ex-husband, is charged with failure to provide food.

Each of the charges carries a maximum fine of $10,000, nine months in prison, or both.

When Windchill was rescued Feb. 9, the colt was suffering from exposure to extreme cold, dehydration and starvation. A veterinarian who examined him Feb. 10 gave him a 1 percent chance of survival.

Windchill's owner, Theresa Farmer of South Range, isn't facing charges at this time. She did not return a message left Thursday evening seeking comment.

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Lovejoy said the Javenkoskis are being charged because they entered an agreement with Farmer in September 2007 whereby Pam Javenkoski was supposed to provide hay and water for two of Farmer's horses in exchange for a third horse of Farmer's.

A copy of the contract included with a Douglas County Sheriff's Department incident report concerns only two adult geldings and makes no mention of Windchill, but Lovejoy said Pam Javenkoski and Farmer verbally changed the agreement to swap Windchill in for one of the two horses in the contract. The contract also does not address what shelter, if any, would be provided to Farmer's horses. Javenkoski said Thursday night she does not have stall space at her farm.

Lovejoy said because the Javenkoskis came in contact with the colt more often than Farmer, they should have noticed his poor physical condition earlier.

"The Javenkoskis really saw that colt on a day-to-day basis," Lovejoy said.

In an interview Thursday night, Javenkoski said she was "flabbergasted" by the charges and plans to plead not guilty. She said she was hesitant to allow Windchill on her farm in the first place because she thought the colt needed more care than the boarding arrangement provided, but relented after Farmer begged her.

"She worked on us for a week," Javenkoski said.

Javenkoski also said she did not know Windchill was only four months old when he arrived at her farm Oct. 31. She also said she suspected the colt was in poor health before it arrived.

"That horse was very stressed out prior to coming here," Javenkoski said.

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According to the criminal complaint, Pam Javenkoski saw Windchill lying on the ground at 10 a.m. Feb. 9 and took no action until at least 3 p.m., when she called Farmer to tell her the horse would not rise. At that point, Farmer had not seen Windchill for three weeks, the criminal complaint said.

Javenkoski said she at first didn't know anything was wrong with Windchill, who was lying in some hay near other horses.

"It didn't really dawn on me," she said. "I thought, 'Oh, that's cute. He's lying in the hay.' "

Javenkoski realized something was wrong when the other horses moved on and Windchill didn't get up to follow.

Lovejoy also said it appears the Javenkoskis knew older horses also living at the farm were chasing Windchill away from food and water and didn't do enough to stop it. Pam Javenkoski declined to discuss that aspect of the incident.

Windchill was rescued Feb. 9 after Farmer called Kathi Davis and asked to borrow a horse blanket for Windchill. Upon seeing Windchill, Davis and Jeff Tucker, who owns Raindance Farms in South Range, took the horse back to Raindance.

Since his rescue, Windchill has improved markedly.

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