Maryville man indicted on horse soring charges

Larry Wheelon
Larry Wheelon

MARYVILLE (WATE) – A Blount County horse trainer is now facing animal cruelty charges.

Larry Wheelon was indicted Monday in relation to a soring case from earlier this year.

Soring is the practice of using chemicals or painful devices on a horse’s leg to produce the high-stepping gait made famous by Tennessee Walking Horses.

Randall Stacy Gunter and Brandon Lunsford were also indicted.

Similar charges were filed against Wheelon in the spring when 19 horses were seized from his Maryville ranch on Tuckaleechee Pike.

Those charges were dropped during a preliminary hearing in August.

Wheelon is a former member of the ethics committee on the Walking Horse Trainers Association.

He has maintained his innocence of the soring allegations.

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