Like a story out of the Old West, the whole incident happened outside the Cowboy Coast Saloon.

A 21-year-old man from Yonkers, New York, was arrested on Sunday, July 26, for punching an Ocean City police horse while officers were trying to make another arrest.  

Just before 1:30 a.m., police responded to a fight at the Cowboy Coast Saloon located on the 1700 block of Philadelphia Avenue. According to the Ocean City Police, a large crowd had formed outside the bar as two men started to fight each other.

The police, including police horse Tucker, tried to control the crowd and make an arrest. However, while officers attempted to de-escalate the situation, two men started cursing at the arresting officers and one man, Daniel Martinez Rivera, hit Tucker.

Rivera was attempting to talk to the arrestees when police told him to back away. However, according to police, Rivera became aggressive, and a mounted officer had to put Tucker in between Rivera and the crowd. Rivera ran around Tucker and pushed the horse’s face away from him. After officers told him to stop touching the horse, Rivera hit the horse three times—once in the eye—and pulled the leather strap on Tucker’s face. Tucker began to jerk back and forth, preventing the mounted officer from gaining control.

Another officer approached Rivera and he attempted to flee the scene, screaming and yelling down the middle of the roadway. The suspect was quickly tackled by officers and was nearly struck by a taxi cab. Rivera now faces multiple charges including obstructing and hindering police officers, resisting arrest, intentionally inflicting physical harm on an Ocean City Police animal, and intoxicated endangerment. 

According to Ocean City municipal code section 6-2, tormenting, beating, kicking, striking, injuring, or mistreating any animal owned by the Ocean City Police Department or willfully interfering with the lawful performance of the animal in the pursuit of police activity is a misdemeanor.

Now, this isn’t the first time Tucker has been harmed in the line of duty. Back in 2017, a 20-year old Maryland man was arrested for smacking Tucker on his rear legs during a large gathering. Mounted officers are generally used to disperse crowds, and poor Tucker has been attacked way too many times, all while helping to protect the citizens of Ocean City. 

Another 21-year-old man from New York, Jordan Ethan Flores Joseph was also arrested during the Sunday morning fight. He screamed insults at the officers. Although he backed away from the scene when told to by officers, he simply moved to another area and started yelling again. According to police reports, he told officers he would sue them for $1.5 million if they touched him and also yelled to the mounted officer, “You’re on a f****** horse bro,” and “Why don’t you have a car?” Flores Joseph was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct and failure to obey lawful orders. 

A 27-year-old woman from Pennsylvania, Abigail Kenly, was also arrested for touching another police horse named Benson during the altercation at Cowboy Coast Saloon. Officers continuously told Kenly to stop touching Benson, and after being told she would be arrested if she touched the horse again, Kenly walked away but patted Benson three times on the side. The Pennsylvania woman was described in police reports as being “highly intoxicated” and was charged with obstructing and hindering law enforcement as well as interfering with a police animal. According that same municipal code 6-2, it is a misdemeanor to touch any animal owned by Ocean City Police Department after being directed by a law enforcement officer not to do so.

Court documents revealed that at least eight other arrests were made in connection with the altercation, mostly for hindering law enforcement.

So, what do you think of the altercation? Let us know in the comments!