Horse woman 'hassled' by police

By Viv Logie of the Greymouth Star -

The woman who rode her trusty steed through downtown Greymouth on Saturday night says she was "hassled" by police and her antics had not harmed anyone.

Louise Stanley admitted to having had a few drinks before mounting her horse, Funky, and trotting into town.

"I do that all the time. There was no harm done until the police got involved," she said.

She was arrested and spent the night in the police cells, while Funky was left to graze at the SPCA compound. When she picked up the horse the next morning she found blood and cuts on its back legs, and the bridle had been pulled apart.

"I want to know what happened to Funky, initially I thought a dog had attacked it," she said.

Ms Stanley has lodged a complaint with the SPCA, although the SPCA has launched its own investigation into her late night escapade, including allegedly trying to take the horse into Revingtons Hotel.

SPCA investigator Jim Boyd, who is coincidentally in town undertaking an audit of the Greymouth branch, was today reviewing the incident with police and Ms Stanley.

Ms Stanley had shown him photographs of Funky with injuries allegedly suffered after being impounded by police.

"She also told me that she was not 'rolling drunk' and what she had done was stupid," Mr Boyd said.

"Depending on the outcome of my discussions with police I may also be looking into the care the horse is receiving."

Ms Stanley said she had been unfairly treated, but agreed the police had asked her to take the horse home before the Revingtons Hotel incident, having also called by the Recreation Hotel on her way into town.

"Police spoke to me on High Street, telling me to go home. I told them they couldn't stop me," she told the Greymouth Star.

As she rode past the Recreation Hotel someone opened a window and Funky "peeked inside".

She said those who she gave a ride outside Revingtons were having a great time.

"Funky is a social horse and was okay. When the police came to Revies they told me if I didn't go home I would be arrested. I tried to get Funky to go forward, but it wouldn't. Funky didn't want to go home, so the police arrested me."

She disputed police claims that she tried to ride the horse into the pub: "I'm not that dumb."

"The policeman was standing on the step outside and I tried to get Funky to headbutt him because I had had enough."

Revingtons Hotel owner Therese Gibbens said Ms Stanley's actions had been stupid but they had nothing to do with the hotel.

Ms Stanley suggested that more people should be riding horses these days - "especially with the price of petrol".

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