#TheList Lily R Todd, born c. 1961, of Rydal Street, Hartlepool TS26 9BA – kicked her teenage daughter’s pet rabbit around the garden to get her attention
Lily Todd was banned from owning animals for five years after kicking a defenceless pet rabbit around her garden, in a bizarre bid to get her daughter’s attention following a row
When a shocked neighbour intervened and called the RSPCA, Todd said attacking the rabbit was the only way she had of getting through to her daughter.
Despite denying the attack on the rabbit, called Twinkle, Todd, who also owned another rabbit and a cockatiel, was found guilty at trial.
RSPCA officials praised magistrates for the sentence and described Todd’s attack on the animal in her garden as ‘awful’.
The court heard that Todd argued with her teenage daughter at around 8.30pm on Friday, March 30, 2012.
She went back inside to get the rabbit and started kicking her, while demanding her daughter went back inside the house.
The rabbit ran off and a neighbour picked her up and took her to his home, while Todd continued looking for her.
John Ellwood, prosecuting, said: ‘Her neighbour gave her back the rabbit and warned her that she shouldn’t kick the rabbit.
‘The defendant said that was the only way she could get her daughter in, and the only way she would listen to her.
‘The neighbour said that it was not the rabbit’s fault and the defendant then picked up the rabbit and threw it at the neighbour, stating that he should just have the rabbit.’
Todd’s neighbour took the animal back and alerted the RSPCA of the attack, who then collected the rabbit and took her to the vets.
X-rays were carried out which showed that the rabbit had suffered five fractured ribs in the attack: two on the right side and three on the left
Vets described the injuries as being consistent with being kicked or thrown.
Todd was interviewed and admitted losing her temper, but denied kicking the rabbit.
She pleaded not guilty, but was found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal.
RSPCA inspector Kristina Raine said: ‘I am pleased with the conviction and the sentence passed.
‘This was an awful attack on a small and defenceless animal.
‘When it was x-rayed the rabbit had fractured ribs which, along with the witness statements, could not have been explained any other way.
‘We are very grateful for the assistance of those witnesses who were a key part of this prosecution and we could not have done it without them.
‘The RSPCA always hope for a ban on keeping animals as the best way of ensuring the safety of others in future.
‘It also means we can now get the rabbit, and Todd’s other animals, into good new homes.’
Sentencing: 12- month community order with a requirement of supervision. Ordered to pay £500 costs to the RSPCA. Five-year ban on keeping animals (expired October 2017).