A Disappearance
 in Missouri
July 19, 2017   

How does a business avoid being held accountable for animal cruelty? Well, in Missouri, they apparently just make the animal disappear. Let us tell you about our experience at TS Whites, LLC in Diamond, Missouri.


While ostensibly owned by Tim White, our research uncovered public records indicating that the auction property was sold to him in 2011, under the name of TS Whites, LLC, for $1.00, by  Oklahoma kill buyer Cecil White, who has also been linked to the Welch Livestock Auction. Within 24 hours of the ownership transfer, the property was then apparently used by Tim White as collateral to secure a loan in the amount of approximately $760,000 - the reason for which is unclear.

In addition, AA connected Cecil White with White's Equine Sales in the past, and the website, Missouri Horses, touting itself as Missouri's #1 Equine Website Directory, lists Cecil White as the current owner/manager of Whites Equine Sales - which just so happens to share the same address, phone number, and other contact information as TS Whites, LLC

Another link connecting these two businessmen is an ad from June of this year, found in " The Big Nickel," an advertising publication out of Joplin, Missouri that clearly shows Cecil and Tim soliciting horses from an unsuspecting public. 

At the Whites' monthly sale in Diamond, MO, horses, pigs, and small animals are sold, and from our observations, none of the animals are treated well.  Not surprisingly, this auction is frequented by kill buyers and horse traders representing broker programs from both Kansas and Missouri, likely due to its central location. 


During our recent visit to TS Whites, our investigators found countless cages and cardboard boxes filled with small animals placed in one of the dusty alleys near the auction area.  Most of the cages were broken and in disrepair. Nonetheless these containers were stuffed to overflowing with animals and many subsequently stacked on top of each other.

Investigators observed many cardboard boxes containing ducklings, however, none of these boxes had air holes. How did the people responsible for this expect these animals to be able to breathe properly, especially considering the heat of the day?  It was at minimum 92F throughout the day.

a box was opened to view ducklings inside

To our dismay, we also noted several small plastic boxes filled with guinea pigs. The miniscule air holes by no means allowed for even minimal ventilation, let alone fresh airflow for the numerous animals inside each box. Chickens were observed in exceedingly poor condition, many with entirely bare behinds due to a complete loss of feathers.

All the animals were visibly struggling, no doubt due to the heat. Surprisingly, given the temperatures, no water had been made available nor were fans running to help with ventilation or cooling. 


Investigators counted 54 loose horses which were likely slaughter prospects along with 18 riding horses, and 7 ponies. As with the small animals and birds, no food or water had been made available to the horses, nor were there fans to aid in ventilation or cooling.

Many of the horses were obviously neglected, covered in scars and injuries, with ribs showing. Most were terrified of human touch, though it was unclear whether this was due to abuse or simply not being previously handled.

One horse, a chestnut, which clearly should not have been accepted for sale in the first place, had two grievous leg injuries - blood was dripping profusely from his left front knee and his right hind leg was swollen with a bleeding fetlock.  The poor animal was also covered in red sores and scars on his hips, neck, and face. He was in obvious distress, continuously licking his wounds and trying to rest the wounded legs. There was no sale tag attached, but he had been placed in the middle of the pen among all the other horses who were plainly destined for sale.

Investigators watched as several people stopped at the pen and looked at the chestnut horse, but no one seemed to be overly surprised or dismayed to find a horse in this condition at the sale. One individual was overheard to say: "Well, this one isn't going to a good home for sure."


Although we have been aware of this location for some time, this was our first onsite visit and we tried to give auction management the benefit of the doubt. In addition to evaluating the condition and treatment of the animals, it was important for us to assess the behavior and attitude of auction employees and management. Unfortunately, even our most minimal expectations were not met.

After documenting the horrific condition of the chestnut horse, an AA investigator approached the auction's office to discuss the injured horse and to urge them to provide immediate vet care. The investigator was met with complete indifference by auction personnel.  No-one seemed concerned or in any way inclined to take responsibility for this gravely wounded animal.

When our investigators inquired if there was a vet onsite to administer medical care to the horse (or any animal in need), they were informed that the vet would be in the pen area, drawing blood for Coggins. Disappointed in the office's lack of interest in the suffering horse, investigators returned to the pen area to locate the vet, hopeful he would take an interest and more important, act.

After some time, investigators were finally able to locate the vet, who was in fact not in the pen area but rather, in a small trailer all the way to the back of the premises

When confronted regarding the horse, the vet admitted to accepting the horse for sale, knowing full well about the injuries. He stated that the horse in question was "crazy and dangerous," and had somehow hurt himself. 

Further, he made it abundantly clear to our investigator that he was unwilling to provide even the most basic of vet care to this seriously injured and obviously suffering animal,  despite the fact he had an ethical responsibility to do so

We also found the vet's statement regarding this horse's behavior incongruous given the auctions' actions. If the animal was so "crazy and dangerous," why take the obvious liability risk of putting him in the middle of a busy public area, easily accessible by children, with no caution sign or other posted warning? In fact, to further cast doubt on this story, our investigators witnessed several auction attendees approach this horse and even touch him without the horse giving the slightest sign of alarm or showing any agitation whatsoever other than the obvious pain and suffering caused by his injuries.

It is difficult to imagine a "crazy and dangerous" animal - one that would cause the degree of injuries to himself as this animal displayed, given the vet's explanation - maintaining any semblance of control under the chaotic conditions of a busy auction, yet this horse had no issue with the noise, being surrounded by other horses, or with strangers approaching him, talking to him, and touching him. The label "crazy and dangerous" simply made no sense.

Stunned by the vet's outright refusal to help the horse, investigators immediately returned to the pen to check on the horse and to call law enforcement since no one at the sale was willing to take any action. 

Incredibly, the horse had disappeared. An immediate and complete search of the auction proved unsuccessful in locating the animal - the horse apparently having been completely removed from the premises or moved to a closed area out of sight.  Subsequent inquiries to auction workers were met with " What horse?"  


As for the sale itself, the actions of the employees mirrored the attitude of the auction's management. Excessive hitting of the horses as they are sent through the ring is apparently routine.   

On top of that, there was absolutely no regard for aggressive horses and stallions; all were put into pens together, resulting in immediate fighting, kicking, and biting. Rather than show concern or separate the animals, auction staff watched and heartily laughed, apparently finding the fierce fighting and chaos quite amusing. 


The attitude of the vet along with that of auction management, combined with the terrible conditions across the board for all the animals is completely unacceptable. 

Although we have no expectation of compliance, we have strongly urged the auction to make numerous improvements.  We are also moving forward to file complaints with relevant authorities regarding our observations.    


While we may not be able to get full justice for the injured horse who simply disappeared, we can certainly make a difference for the hundreds of other animals who have the misfortune to find themselves at this sale. 

We need YOUR HELP to raise more awareness and to promote the positive changes the animals going through this sale need and deserve.

We urge you to voice your complaints against the cruelty and neglect at this auction by leaving your comments on the Facebook pages of TS Whites, LLC and the City of Diamond, MO. Only with pressure will change occur - make your voices heard!

You can also reach out to the Newton County Commissioners via the following website and email address. Share our report and demand action be taken!

Main Email: commission@swbell.net

In addition to joining our Call for Action, we urge you to take a stand against cruelty by supporting our efforts in the field - the animals need us all now more than ever. 

With YOUR help and support, we can put a stop to the brutality and cruel indifference perpetuated by this auction. YOU can make a difference for hundreds of animals each month with your comments and emails, and with one click of a button.  

Support our Call for Action and donate today!

is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, so ALL donations are tax deductible. 

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