DAVIDSVILLE – Conemaugh Township police continue to search for a stallion that went missing from a farm near Davidsville more than a week ago.

SHF Kiss This, aka Newt, a 20-year-old barrel racing champion, was stolen June 12 or 13, the horse's owner said.

"My heart sunk," Joe Marisa, said Saturday as he looked out across his 50-acre property, where three mares were grazing – recalling the moment he realized his stallion was gone.

"I thought I might find him dead in the pasture, whether a mare kicked him ...," Marisa said.

"I searched the whole pasture."

Marisa added: "I've got two mares in heat and he wouldn't leave them. The neighbor came up and we checked the fence and along the edge of the woods. No hoof prints, no manure, nothing. Then my heart really sank."

Police investigating the theft have released few details.

Police urge anyone who might have seen a suspicious vehicle to call 814-288-1400.

Marisa said there is no damage to the fence and no indication the horse had jumped the fence.

A neighbor said he heard and saw nothing.

Newt is a buckskin American Quarter Horse and is registered with the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA). A champion barrel race and rodeo horse, Newt has sired award-winning horses in the barrel-racing industry.

A report was filed with Stolen Horse International Inc., also known as NetPosse, the nation's lost and found for missing or stolen horses.

Marisa said he is building a house and a barn for eight horses. Newt was retired three years ago.

"I was doing this for him," Marisa said. "I wanted to look out and see him in the field."

Marisa said when Newt was in his prime. Someone offered him $100,000 for the horse, but turned that person down.

The horse might have been stolen for breeding. Marisa bristles at the thought.

"If they wanted breeding, all they had to do was asked," he said.

Marisa isn't shy about his feelings for the horse who has been a big part of his life.

"He's family," he said. "He will always be family."

He said he carried no insurance on the horse.

"It's not about money," Marisa said. "I just want him back healthy, no questions asked."

For more information on Newt, log on to NetPosse.com.

Patrick Buchnowski is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. He can be reached at 532-5061. Follow him on Twitter @PatBuchnowskiTD.

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