LEXINGTON — Two of three family members were sentenced to probation in July in Dawson County District Court for causing the death of their livestock in 2018.

According to court records, Diane Wempen, 60, and her son Eugene Wempen Jr., 34, began their 2 ½ year probation sentences on July 29 for felony cruel neglect to animals.

They and the patriarch of the family, Eugene Wempen Sr., 60, were charged in April 2018 after 55 animal carcasses were found in corrals on their farm northwest of Overton.

Diane and Eugene Wempen Jr. also were sentenced to 76 days jail and were given one day credit for time already served. However, the remaining 75-day jail sentence could be waived if they successfully complete probation.

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Eugene Wempen Sr., 60, was sentenced in February to 2½ years of probation for felony cruel neglect to animals, stemming from the same case. He was sentenced to 91 days of jail and credit for one day served. He also won’t be required to serve the remaining jail sentence if he follows his probation terms.

All three individuals are not allowed to own animals for 15 years, according to Dawson County Attorney Elizabeth Waterman.

In addition to the carcasses, the Dawson County Sheriff’s Office wrote in a 2018 press release that other animals showed signs of malnutrition and sickness. About 75 live cattle, along with llamas, donkeys, miniature ponies, horses, goats and sheep were relocated.

Court records say hay was found on the property. DCSO and livestock professionals immediately fed the animals on the farm.


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