03/10/2017 12:16PM

Standardbred trainer suspended for 15 years after allegedly beating horse

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A Standardbred trainer based in Indiana has been issued a 15-year suspension based on the allegation that he severely beat one of the horses under his care, according to local reports.

Trainer Bobby Brower was issued the suspension after he failed to request a hearing in front of the state’s racing commission within a 20-day deadline. Brower did not attend the Tuesday commission meeting at which the sentence was approved, but his attorney argued that he deserved to have a trial to defend himself against the accusation.

The attorney, Peter Sacupolus, could not be reached for comment on Friday.

The Indiana Horse Racing Commission accused the trainer of severely beating the horse, B ABland, at a farm in Anderson near the state’s harness track, Hoosier Park, last August. According to reports, Brower said after the incident that it had been “blown out of proportion.”

The penalty is one of the harshest handed down by a racing commission in decades. According to the commission, Brower, who is a trainer and driver, has been penalized 44 times in the last 20 years, six times for “indiscriminate use of the whip.”