COLUMBIA, South Carolina – A South Carolina man was charged with having sex with a horse after the animal's owner caught the act on videotape, then staked out the stable and caught him at shotgun point, authorities said Wednesday.
But this wasn't the first time Rodell Vereen has been charged. He pleaded guilty last year to having sex with the same horse after owner Barbara Kenley found him in the same stable. Then he was sentenced to probation and placed on the state's sex offender list.
Kenley said she noticed several weeks ago that her 21-year-old horse Sugar was acting strange and getting infections. She noticed things in the barn had been moved around — dirt piled up and bales of hay stacked near the horse's stall at her Lazy B Stables in Longs, about 20 miles northeast of Myrtle Beach.
"Police kept telling me it couldn't be the same guy," Kenley said Wednesday. "I couldn't believe that there were two guys going around doing this to the same horse."
She spent several nights at the stables, which are about 4 miles from her home, but didn't find anything. So she installed surveillance cameras, and when she reviewed the footage from July 19, she couldn't believe she was seeing the same man doing the same thing to her horse.
Kenley didn't call police because she was certain the man would come back to the stable, and she wanted to make sure he was arrested. So she staked out the barn and caught Vereen inside Monday night, chasing him to his truck and holding him with her shotgun until police came.
"He said he wasn't there to do anything, and I said, 'I know you were. I have you on tape.' And then he said he was sorry if he hurt me," Kenley said.
Vereen, 50, was first charged with trespassing, but police added a buggery charge after watching the surveillance tape.
He faces up to five years if convicted. Vereen was already on probation after pleading guilty to buggery last year and was sentenced to three years of probation, ordered to stay away from the Lazy B Stables and declared a sex offender.
He remains in jail, awaiting a hearing Monday to determine if he violated his probation.
Vereen has had mental problems for several years, but seemed to get better after getting court-ordered treatment last year, said his brother, the Rev. James Vereen, who lives just down the street from his brother and the stables.
"He's done all right when he was on the medicine. I don't know if he is still taking it," said James Vereen, who added his brother has kept to himself a lot in the last few months.
Kenley pointed out that she caught Vereen in 2007, too. him then too. She stopped by her stable on Thanksgiving Day and found a man asleep in the hay by her horse, who had been locked in her stall, a mound of dirt and a stool behind her.
She said she thought about shooting Vereen both times, but didn't want to go to prison.
"Everyone around here has horses," Kenley said. "And they all said the same thing. You should have shot him."