barn owner holding my horses hostage
Hope this is the place to vent because right now I need it. So I purchased my mare in February and the man was nice enough to allow me to keep her there, HE NEVER ASKED ME TO PAY HIM ANYTHING. There was a verbal understanding I would just take care of her and that was fine. In March she had my colt and I have bought feed and hay for them ever since.
Today I received a voicemail from the man who owns the barn asking me if I had received the letter that he send me in the mail. I called him back and he told me that he had sent a certified letter to me on June 12th stating that as of May 27th I was required to start paying him $15 a day or move my horses (I guess he just made up a date and waited 3 weeks to send a letter). I have yet to receive the letter he talked about, and he NEVER verbally asked me to pay him anything for stall rent or anything EVER.
Since I am only finding this out on June 18th, this to him means I owe him $360 today to move them or I would owe him $360 plus any additional days it takes me to come up with the money or he's keeping my horses.
If he would have asked me to do that I would have gladly it, but he never did. Instead what I would do because I appreciated him letting me keep them there would be to help out around there, like feeding his horses, bathing them, cleaning the feed room, and cleaning stalls to help them out for being nice to me. So, on my lunch break I politely went down to the police station to see what my rights are as far as getting my horses away from there are. They tried to call him to get "his side" of the story but he didn't answer so they left a voicemail. Then the officer told me he can not legally hold my horses and they can assist me in getting them from him if I just call them when I go over there tonight. My biggest fear now is that he will get the voicemail from the police station and get off work early and go hide my horses. I'm praying that if that happens I will be able to press charges to get them back. I absolutely do not want to press charges and I don't want him getting into trouble, but I don't think it's fair for him to make up a date to start charging me board and then hope that I will either pay him all this money he made up or hope I will give up and just give him my horses back.
The only thing in writing is my receipt of purchase and all of the receipts I have from the feed stores for everything I have bought for them since February. There was never a verbal/written agreement about me paying anything for boarding my horses. I really just want to scream right now!!!! Needless to say today has been very stressful and frustrating. Buying my mare has been a lifelong dream of mine I finally made come true, and this man is trying to take her away from me.