Buried animal remains cause ground water concerns

PLEASANT PRAIRIE (WITI) -- Several animal carcasses found buried on a Pleasant Prairie farm have residents worried their drinking water may be contaminated.

"The lead investigator said there's things here that I've never seen before," said Pleasant Prairie Chief of Police David Mogensen.

The farm was investigated by several agencies last month. Initially, five horses were found dead in their stalls and 23 horses were found starving.

"This is something most police departments don't encounter, especially on this scale," said Mogensen.

Law enforcement investigated a second time and found two mass burials on the property containing 55 horses, 12 goats, and two cows. The owners of the farm, David and Paula White, were arrested for animal neglect.

Lisa Candelaria, a neighbor of the farm, was concerned not only about the number of dead animals, but that the burials were in close proximity to a stream.

"The number of horses keep going up and up and up, and you don't know because we have well water. You're scared, you don't know what you're drinking," said Candelaria.

The Department of Natural Resources has tested samples from Pleasant Prairie Public Works. Fortunately, the tests came back negative for bacteria, e-coli, and fecal matter.

Police are waiting for the test results of the deceased animals. At this time, all signs point to starvation as the cause of death. Authorities suspect there may be more animals buried on the property.