#TheList Sean Luke Wilkinson, born 01/02/1984, formerly of Silver Street, Barrow upon Humber, and as of December 2017 living at 6 Radford Meadow, Castle Donington DE74 2NZ – laughed after throwing cat out of 24ft high window, breaking five of her ribs & pelvis
Wilkinson laughed after throwing his cat out of a third-floor window in a fit of rage after she weed on him. He opened the window of his top-floor flat and flung the one-year-old cat nearly 24 feet to the ground below.
A neighbour saw him walk out of the block of flats laughing and later pick up the pet, called Luna, and suggest the neighbour let his dog out to have a go at her. The witness raised the alarm and RSPCA inspectors took Luna to a vets’ practice where she was diagnosed with five broken ribs and double fracture of the pelvis as a result of the 7.3-metre plunge.
The RSPCA had requested magistrates ban Wilkinson from keeping any pets.
But the court heard Wilkinson’s mum, who is a veterinary nurse, keeps a dog and a cat at home in Silver St, Barrow, where her son lived at the time of sentencing.
She wept in the back of the court as magistrates imposed the ban on keeping cats which meant she had to find a new home for her kitten.
Luna survived the ordeal and has since been rehomed.
Sentence: 300 hours of unpaid work, vets’ fees and costs totalling around £2,500, which Wilkinson was allowed to pay off at £20 per week. Banned from keeping cats for 10 years (expires January 2025).
#TheList Robert McElhill, born 06/06/1987, former co-owner of the Notting Hill Guest House, 72 Holland Park Avenue, London W11 3QZ and more recently (2018) of Millcroft Road, Cumbernauld, Glasgow G67 – kept 33 dogs and puppies starving, neglected and living in squalor
McElhill, who co-owned the Notting Hill Guest House with his mother Beatrice Hughes, kept dozens of starving dogs in filthy, squalid conditions at the property.
Officers found 33 dogs of all shapes and sizes including a Great Dane ‘mix’, a Chihuahua, a Rottweiler and a Saluki, also known as an Arabian Greyhound.
Most of the dogs were covered in scars and were found shut inside rooms in the private living quarters.
The floors were covered in faeces and urine; the windows were boarded up or blacked out.
There was no bedding for the animals who were locked in rooms in groups of two to six.
There was even an 18 inch tall chihuahua that was found locked in a cage just 19 inches high. Two other dogs were barricaded in the stairs and there was no clean water.
In the basement police found a sandy coloured lurcher and seven puppies.
The lurcher was extremely underweight; her skin was stretched tightly over her bones.
The puppies were in poor physical condition with faeces matted in their coats and showed poor physical care.
McElhill was found guilty of six counts of animal neglect and four counts of ‘failing to prevent the causing of unnecessary suffering’ to animals.
Sentencing: 200 hours community service; £2000 costs. Banned from owning dogs for 10 years (expires January 2025).
#TheList Lewis Carpenter, 11 Winchester Rd, Dunscroft, Doncaster DN7 4NB – committed a ‘deliberate act of cruelty’ during which a dog under his control killed a cat
Carpenter, who was with another youth whose identity he refused to disclose, led the dog to fatally attack the pet cat, named R2.
The horrific incident was captured on a neighbour’s CCTV camera and Carpenter was arrested when he was identified after the footage was shared on Facebook.
Matt Gelder, the cat’s owner, found R2 lying in his kitchen, covered in blood the next morning, the court heard.
Vets operated on R2, but he died several days later – leaving Mr Helder with a £2,400 bill for treatment.
Carpenter was told by the chairman of the bench: “This was a deliberate act of cruelty. You showed the dog to the cat and led it to him. The results were horrific. You are very lucky you are not going to prison.”
After the hearing Mr Gelder said he was glad Carpenter had been caught but appealed for anyone with information about the other man’s identity to contact the police.
Sentencing 12-week sentence suspended for a year; 200 hours of unpaid work; ordered to pay cat’s owner £305.76 in compensation. Five-year ban on keeping an animal (expires January 2020).
Source: Doncaster Free Press (article removed)
In a Facebook message posted by Lewis Carpenter’s father, Neil Carpenter, he (Neil) expressed his anger that people were sharing the story of his son’s despicable act of deliberate animal cruelty. Shockingly a friend of Mr Carpenter’s named Cathi Askin said that “every dog man around has killed a cat in there time just unlucky he got caught” [sic].
#TheList William Michael Leggatt, born 15/03/1995), originally from Gravesend, Kent, and more recently 100 Badger Rd, Thornbury, Bristol BS35 1AD – caught on CCTV beating two huskies. Kicked one husky and stamped on her back and broke the hip of a puppy.
Leggatt, aged 19 at date of the offence, pleaded guilty to five offences under the Animal Welfare Act.
District judge Lynn Matthews said Leggatt’s treatment of his animals amounted to “torture”.
Judge Matthews said she was “staggered” by what she had read in the veterinary reports, noting that. “With the puppy it wasn’t a slight fracture but the bone has broken away.”
One of the videos showed Leggatt kicked one of the dogs 29 times.
Police uncovered the abuse when they were investigating another crime in Leggatt’s block of flats and examined CCTV.
Sentence: jailed for 17 weeks. Banned from keeping animals for life.
On 18/07/2018 lifelong loser Leggatt was jailed yet again after attacking a woman and breaking a rabbit’s leg by throwing him on the floor. For the animal cruelty he was given a 21 week jail sentence and a four-week consecutive sentence for the assault.
#TheList Samuel Paul Healey, born 12/08/1987, of Flat 15, Graham House, Timperley Gardens, Redhill RH1 2BQ – subjected a young mastiff to repeated beatings, resulting in her death from extensive injuries
Healey punched and kicked the two-and-a-half year old female tan mastiff, called Puppy leaving her suffering from blunt force trauma. Her injuries were so bad that vets had no choice but to put her down.
Following the sentencing, RSPCA Inspector Robert Jackson said: “This was a hugely distressing case. A post-mortem showed Puppy suffered extensive injuries caused by blunt trauma used with considerable force.
“The vet said this caused extensive suffering. Puppy did not die quickly.
“The defendant has anger issues and said he was in a rage and very frustrated. He was very penitent afterwards and is seeking treatment for his anger management issues.”
Sentence: 12 weeks in prison, suspended for two years; 100 hours of unpaid work; £500 costs. Banned from keeping animals for ten years (expires January 2025).
#TheList Rosalind Cormack, born 28/03/1956 of 12 Wellgarth Walk, Knowle, Bristol BS4 2TA – left 16 pets including cats, rabbits and a dog to starve to death inside her abandoned home
RSPCA inspectors found eight dead pets in Rosalind Cormack’s filthy home – and a further seven had to be put down.
Prosecuting for the RSPCA, Lindi Meyer said RSPCA inspector Kimily Walters went to the property on August 14, 2014.
“She noticed there were flies on the window and a strange smell,” Ms Meyer said.
“The inspector attended again the next day and there was no reply. She returned the following day, on August 16.
“A tortoiseshell cat was at the kitchen window trying to get out. Another cat was at the letterbox, clawing to get out of the property.
“She looked in a black bin outside the property and saw the head of a black cat. Police were called.”
One police officer said: “The stench was unbearable, making it impossible to breathe through my nose.”
There were several bowls of food and water around the cluttered home, which was strewn with animal faeces and corpses.
The tortoiseshell female cat, named Mimi, was trapped in the kitchen as a dead tan collie dog was wedged in the door.
A white kitten was found dead on the stairs, covered in fleas. A white cat was discovered dead in Cormack’s bedroom, and officers also found a dead tan hamster in a filthy cage in a front bedroom and two rabbits dead in their hutch in the garden.
A further dead kitten was discovered in Cormack’s lounge.
In interview, Cormack said the dog had been dead for up to a month, while the rabbits and hamster had died up to four months earlier.
She claimed three of the dead cats had been alive when she left, though admitted they were thin and had fleas.
Tests on the dead animals could not establish a cause of death due to the degree of decomposition, Ms Meyer said.
Inspectors took the eight live cats for treatment and found all were suffering from cat flu, fleas and had behavioural problems.
“All but one had to be euthanised,” Ms Meyer added.
Cormack pleaded guilty to one count of causing unnecessary suffering to Mimi, not providing a suitable environment for a further eight cats, all of whom were alive on discovery, or for three cats which had died.
Sentencing: 12-week custodial sentence, suspended for 12 months. Costs and charges totalling £1,080. Lifetime ban on keeping animals.
#TheList Darren Lee Wheatcroft, born 16/01/1967, of 83 Haywood Road, Accrington BB5 5AW, son Callan Nathan Wheatcroft, born 07/02/1993, of 3 Alliance Street, Accrington BB5 2RT, and their associate Simon Paul Whitworth, born 07/03/1971, of Ramsclough Farm, Haslingden Old Road, Oswaldtwistle BB5 3SN – for organised dog-fighting using ‘banned’ breeds
RSPCA and police executed warrants at Haywood Road in Accrington and Ramsclough Farm Cottages on Haslingden Old Road in Oswaldtwistle in May 2014.
Officers found five banned pitbull-type dogs, large collections of books and magazines relating to dog-fighting and treating dog injuries, veterinary equipment for treating animals involved in fights, treadmills, ceiling hooks and weighing scales.
At Ramsclough Farm, officers found two banned dogs, Dingo and Sheeba, in kennels at the back of farmhouses and found injuries on the left front leg of Sheeba.
The RSPCA also found evidence from phone texts and WhatsApp messages belonging to Darren Wheatcroft relating to attempting to organise an animal fight.
One message on Darren Wheatcroft’s phone from his son Callan said ‘so does he still have that killer 37/38 dog? Would you go for a grand with Dingo?’ to which he replied ‘Zulu hooked up’.
Darren Wheatcroft pleaded guilty to arranging a dog-fight to take place, keeping or training dogs for use in an animal fight and possessing three banned pitbull-type dogs.
His son Callan Wheatcroft pleaded guilty to keeping or training dogs for use in an animal fight and possessing three banned pitbull-type dogs.
Father-of-two Simon Whitworth – a company director – pleaded guilty to not ensuring the welfare of a animal, keeping or training dogs for use in an animal fight and possessing two banned pitbull terrier-type dogs.
Defending the trio, Simon Farnsworth of FMB Solicitors in Blackburn told the court that despite large amounts of evidence against them, there was nothing to prove they had carried out any dog-fights.
District Judge James Clarke told Burnley Magistrates Court that he was ‘quite satisfied’ all the banned dogs and equipment were ‘being used for illegal dog-fighting’.
Sentencing, he said: “The centre of this case is that each of you, to varying degrees, together and separately, were involved in the ownership, training and care of prohibited animals.
“These dogs are illegal for a reason because they are dangerous, not only labelled dangerous by parliament but by their physical characteristics, their training, their selective breed and ability to cause significant physical injuries.
“You have willingly and knowingly involved yourself in an industry and endeavour that perpetuates cruelty to animals, the vindication of fighting to the death of animals and also the mistreatment of dogs.
“It’s something which you have invested significant amount of your own finances and no doubt considered the potential to make money out of the enterprise.
“This was deliberate offending over a period of time with little or no regard to the animals other than as sources of entertainment or for financial gain.”
Sentencing: Callan Wheatcroft and Simon Whitworth were given suspended 16-week jail sentences; Darren Wheatcroft was given a 20-week suspended sentence. All three were ordered to carry out 150 hours’ unpaid work. Darren Wheatcroft and Whitworth were ordered to pay RSPCA costs of £15,000 each and Callan Wheatcroft was ordered to pay £10,000. All three men were banned from owning or keeping dogs for life.
#TheList Gypsy traveller Anthony Barnett Astles (DoB 10/06/1973) of Holt Lane, Halton, Runcorn, Cheshire WA6 2AY – left Great Dane Neo to starve to death in a caravan toilet.
The caravan was kept on a pallet yard and it was only after a recently recruited worker stumbled upon it that Neo’s emaciated corpse was found.
He had been locked in a tiny caravan toilet and starved and the floor was covered in excrement.
Inspector Nadine Pengilly said: “In ten years of being an inspector this is the saddest thing I have ever seen. He was such a big dog and he was just shut in that tiny room, it was filthy and full of excrement.
“He had starved to death and he must have spent four to six weeks waiting for someone to come and rescue him.
“Thinking about how Neo must have suffered is incredibly sad.”
Unemployed Astles – a member of the travelling community – pleaded guilty to one charge of causing unnecessary suffering to Neo between January 31 and February 28, 2014.
Sentence: Astles was sentenced to a 14-week custodial sentence and a lifetime ban on keeping animals as well as an £85 surcharge.