PULLMAN - The 70-year-old Pullman area rancher convicted of animal cruelty has been released from jail after complying with the judge’s order to give up his cattle.
Marcus Jacobson was convicted by a Whitman County District Court jury on two counts of misdemeanor animal cruelty in June. The case involved two dying cows on Jacobson’s ranch near LaCrosse. Judge John Hart followed state law and prohibited Jacobson from owning animals. Judge Hart gave Jacobson two weeks to get rid of his nearly 180 head of cattle. When Jacobson failed to sell his herd after two weeks Judge Hart sentenced the 70 year old to two years in jail.
Over the past several weeks the Whitman County Sheriff’s Office, Prosecutor’s Office, Jacobson’s attorney and local ranchers have assisted with the sale of Jacobson’s herd. Jacobson no longer has cattle and Judge Hart granted his attorney’s motion to suspend the rest of his sentence. The prosecutor’s office has dismissed the remaining 17 charges that were pending against Jacobson.
The sale of Jacobson’s herd ends years of legal battles involving the rancher. The issues include fines from the Washington State Department of Ecology against Jacobson for allowing his cattle to pollute the South Fork of the Palouse River near Pullman. Drivers have hit his tray cows at least three times. A 2020 crash involving one of Jacobson’s stray bulls nearly killed a Pullman man on U.S. Highway 195. Jacobson was convicted by a jury in 2021 for failing to keep his cows fenced in. He ran cows on two ranches one South of Pullman on Kirkendahl Road and another near LaCrosse on State Route 26 and Rock Springs Road.