13-year-old boy donates horse to Ohio police department

The horse Ben Wagstaff donated was a much-needed addition to the unit

By Police1 Staff

ST. MARY’S, W. Va. — A 13-year-old boy with dreams of becoming a cop donated his horse to a mounted unit on Tuesday.

According to Fox 8 Cleveland, the horse Ben Wagstaff donated was a much-needed addition to the unit. 

“Normally we’re looking for donations. We don’t have people coming to us saying, ‘Hey, we’ve got horses’,” Sgt. Bob Forsythe said.

Wagstaff emailed several agencies to see if his 4-year-old horse, Sam, could become a police horse.

The Columbus Mounted Unit said Wagstaff’s donation came at perfect timing because they had just retired two horses.

In a Facebook post, the department called the teen’s act “selfless.”


13-YEAR-OLD WHO WANTS TO BE A POLICE OFFICER DONATES HIS HORSE TO CPD’S MOUNTED UNIT! To say 13-year-old Ben Wagstaff is selfless is an understatement. His mom Jessica Owens-Wagstaff couldn’t be more proud. The St. Mary’s, West Virginia teen emailed a few police agencies in neighboring states to see if his 4-year-old draft horse, Sam, could be a police horse. Fast forward 2 months, today members of CPD’s Mounted Unit made Sam a part of their family. Legend, a 4-legged member of CPD’s Mounted Unit, rode along to help Sam get comfortable to get in the horse trailer. With family and friends watching Sam made it in and enjoyed the ride to his new home. He’ll be one of CPD’s 11 horses in the Mounted Unit. Sgt. Bob Forsythe says Sam will need 6-12 months of training but he’s optimistic that he’ll make an excellent addition! CPD is fortunate and grateful for the donation. Horses are bought and donated to CPD.

Posted by Columbus Division of Police on Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Forsythe says Sam will need about six to 12 months of training before he becomes an official police horse.

“I’m very proud of Ben,” Wagstaff’s mother, Jessica Owens-Wagstaff, said. “He’s raised him [Sam] from a colt.”

Officers gifted Wagstaff, who already knows he wants to be a cop when he grows up, with a Mounted Unit t-shirt, a patch and a challenge coin.

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