Potsdam, Germany ( Associated Press) — German prosecutors will drop animal cruelty investigations into an athlete and a coach who were shown last year thrashing a horse during the Olympic modern pentathlon.
The investigation will be dropped once athlete Annika Schleu and coach Kim Reznor pay an agreed sum to an undisclosed charitable organization, prosecutors in the eastern city of Potsdam said on Tuesday.
Schleu lost his chance for a gold medal when the horse Saint Boy, who had been randomly assigned to him, refused to cooperate during the showjumping round of the modern pentathlon in Tokyo. TV footage showed Schleu repeatedly using the whip and being urged to hit the horse by Resner. The coach was also shown leaning over a fence to strike St. Boy.
Prosecutors said they reached the decision to drop the investigation because the horse was not injured, the conduct in question occurred “briefly” and because the Olympics constituted an “extraordinary physical and psychological condition”.
Prosecutors said that, since the governing body of the modern pentathlon plans to remove equestrianism from the sport, the incident is unlikely to recur.
Raisner was suspended from the Tokyo Olympics for participating in the event and subsequently ordered to undergo animal welfare training before participating in any International Modern Pentathlon Federation competitions.
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