MADISON COUNTY, Ind. - Police have identified the owners of a Madison County farm where nearly 100 dead animals and 30 malnourished animals were found Tuesday.
Authorities said Daniel and Carrie Ault own the property at 3726 W. County Road 1700 N. Officers went to the property Tuesday about 9:30 p.m. on reports of a strong odor coming from the farm.
When police arrived, they found more than 100 dead animals in barns and around the property. The remaining animals -- eight horses, two ponies, a llama, sheep, ducks, chickens, turkeys and rabbits -- were malnourished.
The living animals might be contaminated because they have been living among dead animals, Madison County Sheriff Ron Richardson said.
"As they were giving those animals water, they were sucking up the water quicker than they could get it into the buckets," Richardson said. "In one of the stalls was a sheep and her dead babies. Multiple animals from cows (to) horses, their bodies were stacked upon bodies."
Richardson also said there were buckets of human feces in the barn.
Investigators said the Aults helped run the Strawtown Auction in Hamilton County and that they were buying and selling the animals there.
Daniel Ault told investigators that he became overwhelmed with the number of animals he'd brought home and couldn't properly care for them all.
"When you're thowing animals in buckets and leaving dead bodies and allowing other creatures to live, sleep and eat among the dead, that to me speaks a little more than overwhelmed," said Maleah Stringer, president of Anderson's Animal Protection League.
Daniel Ault also recently bought a meat processing facility in Grant County, but detectives did not say if he used animals from his farm for meat.
Daniel Ault has an arrest record that includes a prior case of animal cruelty and two cases of check deception.
The couple has children, and they have been taken into custody with Child Protective Services.
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