ST. GEORGE, S.C. (WCBD)- The owner of a horse sanctuary in St. George says she’s devastated after several of her horses were shot, leaving one dead and others injured.

The sanctuary is a place Marcy Hippy created to be a safe space for horses and other animals. But now they’ve come face-to-face with tragedy.

“This has been a nightmare. It’s been hell on earth,” Hippy said.

Hippy said she heard gunshots close to her property on Friday evening. And while it’s not an unusual thing to hear in rural St. George, she decided to check up on her animals anyway — that’s when she made a shocking discovery.

“My other horses were running, and I didn’t realize they had been shot until the next morning,” said Hippy.

News 2 learned late Saturday night that the Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office was investigating after four of her horses were shot on Friday evening, severely injuring three and killing one.

A goat was also killed.

“My horse Charlotte was dead, and also my goat, Ginger, was also dead,” Hippy said.

Hippy said she does not believe the shooting was accidental. “The way multiple horses were shot, with the precision they were shot, it was no accident,” she told News 2.

News 2 spoke to the Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office and they said they’re actively investigating the incident.

“This is a very disturbing incident that has happened. We are working very hard to identify those responsible and the reason for the assault on the animals,” said Dorchester County Sheriff L.C. Knight in a statement Monday afternoon.

Hippy says no matter how long it takes, she’ll make sure justice is served.

“I want to find who did this, and I want to prosecute them to the fullest extent of the law and then I’m just going to come after them civilly if that’s a remedy because they’re going to pay,” Hippy said. “This is going to be an ongoing problem now for these horses and for me. This isn’t just a two-day incident, these horses are injured for life.”

If you have any information about this incident, you’re asked to contact the Dorchester Co. Sheriff’s Office.