#TheList Cathy-Lee McGuire (aka Cathy-Lee Carleton), born 17/02/1991, of Ballymena Road, Ballymena BT42 1DT – allowed her pet German Shepherd to become severely emaciated
Cathy-Lee McGuire pleaded guilty to causing suffering to the unnamed one-year old German Shepherd.
Two charges were brought against McGuire by Mid and East Antrim Borough Council under the Welfare of Animals Act (NI) 2011.
The dog was found in a severely emaciated state with all bones of the pelvis and the spine visible and a sunken appearance to his face at McGuire’s property during an investigation by an animal welfare officer in February 2014.
He recovered from his ordeal and was successfully rehomed.
Sentence: total of £880.25 fines and costs with 26 weeks to pay.McGuire was not banned from keeping animals.
#TheList Carl Peter McQuillan, born 09/02/1987, of 148 Spruce Court, Salford M6 5EW – abandoned the pet Staffy Cleo, for whom he admitted he never gave “a second thought”, to starve to death
Staffordshire bull terrier Cleo was found dead, surrounded by faeces and urine and with flies around her body at a house in Swinton.
The horrifying extent of McQuillan’s neglect was outlined by prosecutors. He admitted “not giving a second thought” to the dog after moving in elsewhere with his father after his stepmother was diagnosed with cancer, it was said.
The RSPCA were originally called to his home in January 2015, after receiving reports of an abandoned dog, but they were assured she had not been left alone for long.
Then on 14 March 2016 police were called to Bolton Road in Swinton, near the Lord Nelson pub, to reports of a public order offence.
After being arrested McQuillan told officers he needed to go home to pick up some medication for a heart problem.
It was then police came across his dog, which had been left to fend for herself since Christmas time.
Prosecuting for the RSPCA, Anne McDonald said a police officer who entered the room encountered an ‘overwhelming smell’ which made him feel ‘physically sick and took his breath away’.
She added: “He said that the dog was clearly deceased and appeared in a mummified state. He said he was shocked at the state of the animal and had never seen a dog left in such a condition.”
A post mortem examination found that the dog could have died any time from eight to 40 days before she was discovered by police. A child’s shoe was found in the dog’s mouth and other items in her stomach.
McQuillan’s lawyer Michael Cahill conceded his client “didn’t give the animal a second thought.”
Addressing McQuillan, the judge said: “It was a horrendous offence. There was quite clearly neglect.
“You effectively abandoned your dog around Christmas and it was found dead in March.
“The dog had tried to eat just about anything before it died. I have no doubt it suffered a miserable death.”
Sentence: 16 weeks in prison for the animal offence plus 10 weeks for assault on his partner, to run consecutively.
#TheList Ryan Thomas Edwards (aka Ryan Halbert), born 18/01/1996, of Slackeys Lane, Southport PR9 8HN – dragged a terrified dog by her collar and hurled her at a wall.
Persistent criminal Edwards snapped when the female Staffordshire Bull Terrier, named Marley, refused to go over to him when he called her.
The thug dragged the dog by the collar before picking her up by the head and throwing her four feet against a wall.
Edwards had denied causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal, but changed his plea to guilty at the last minute.
The court heard Zoe Edwards, the defendant’s sister, was in her bedroom with Marley at the family’s former home in Southport , on November 6, 2015.
Bernice Campbell, prosecuting, said: “The defendant came into the bedroom and called the dog over. It very reluctantly came towards him, but was shaking and clearly scared.”
Ms Campbell said the defendant went outside with Marley and returned to the bedroom a short time later.
She told the court: “Marley went back to sit by Zoe. The defendant called her back over but the dog refused to go.
“He then grabbed her collar, dragged her towards him and grabbed her by the head, and threw her four feet into a wall. The dog was stunned and froze.”
Zoe confronted her brother, who then attacked her.
Ms Campbell said: “The defendant launched himself towards Zoe and punched her to the face, grabbed her by the hair and punched her to the ribs.
“Zoe’s mum came to help and the defendant released his grip, before grabbing her by the throat.”
The attack left Zoe with hair missing and a sore head.
The court heard Edwards had already been convicted of common assault and assault occasioning actual bodily harm for the attack on his sister, and had been sentenced to six months in prison the previous month.
Sentencing: 28 days in prison to run concurrently with six-month jail term for assault. 10-year ban on keeping animals.
Update August 2019: Edwards has racked up numerous criminal convictions in the years since his attack on Marley. In February 2019 he was fined after it was discovered he had a dog in breach of his banning order. Edwards is said to be affiliated with an organised crime group.
Roberta Kirsten Adele Cleere, born 11/10/1977, of 72 Dolcoath Avenue, Camborne, Cornwall TR14 8RY – for the shocking mistreatment of several horses at her sanctuary, the Second Chance Horse Rescue Centre; breached her ban on having any involvement with equine animals within one year
In October 2016 Cleere was found guilty of four counts of causing unnecessary suffering to animals in her care after horses belonging to her were found with leg wounds, eye wounds, poor body condition and in a state of emaciation.
She was charged as follows:
1. Causing unnecessary suffering to a Shetland cob-type horse, called Prince, by failing to provide adequate veterinary and attention to a leg injury between 31/12/2015 and 9/1/2016
2. Causing unnecessary suffering to a Shetland cob-type horse, called Prince, by failing to provide adequate veterinary care for a problem with his eye between 5/1/2016 and 9/1/2016
3. Causing unnecessary suffering to two Shetland cob-type horses, called Beau and Jess, by failing to investigate and adequately treat the cause of their poor body condition between 2/12/2015 and 8/1/2016
4. Causing unnecessary suffering to a piebald cob-type horse, called Sampson, by failing to adequately investigate weight loss between 18/12/2015 and 10/2/2016
Prosecuting on behalf of the RSPCA, Kevin Withey told the court how Cleere ignored advice and warnings of the RSPCA and failed to properly look after the horses at her sanctuary.
The court was told how Cleere recently had eight horses which were now under the ownership of her then 17-year-old daughter Chandon Cleere, with two set to be rehomed within the coming months.
Original sentence (Oct 2016): 24 weeks in custody, suspended for two years; 100 hours of unpaid work; costs of £1250 plus victim surcharge. Banned from keeping horses for 10 years (expires October 2026).
For the breach of a suspended sentence Cleere was fined £300, and for the breach of the disqualification from involvement in horses she was given a four-week curfew, active seven days a week between 10pm and 6am. She must also pay court costs of £375 and an £85 victim surcharge.
#TheList Billy Michael Furey, born c. 1997, of 35 Elmfield Avenue, Huddersfield HD3 4SQ – allowed his dog to be “dangerously out of control”. The dog attacked a woman and her Jack Russell and was ordered to be destroyed.
Furey was convicted of owning a dangerous dog which attacked Elizabeth Duffield. Mrs Duffield spent five days in hospital following the attack near her home in Golcar on March 13, 2014. She was left with horrific hand injuries and facing the ordeal of extensive surgery to repair the damage.
Mrs Duffield’s Jack Russell Buster was also injured in the attack.
Furey pleaded guilty to owning a dog dangerously out of control and causing injury when he appeared before Kirklees Magistrates.
The magistrates ordered that the dog must be destroyed unless an appeal is lodged within the next 21 days.
Furey was also sentenced for dishonestly receiving stolen goods. He drove a stolen Mazda on Riddings Road, Deighton, without a licence or insurance.
When police stopped him panic-stricken Furey reversed the Mazda into the police vehicle behind him and got stuck.
Sentencing: He was given a community order to take part in an accredited programme for 33 days and ordered to pay £200 compensation for dog attack. His driving licence endorsed with eight points.
#TheList Mark Simon Phillip Sharp, born 27/9/1982, formerly of Heathgate Avenue, Speke, Liverpool and more recently (2019) Falkener House, Stoney Stanton Road, Coventry CV56 5PU – poured boiling liquid on a King Charles Spaniel and caused her to suffer nine broken ribs and a broken pelvis during months of secret abuse
Daisy, who belonged to Sharp’s then-partner, suffered full thickness burns to her head and body and was left cowering away from human contact.
Sharp was jailed for 16 weeks at Liverpool Magistrates’ Court on 3 October 2016 after pleading guilty to animal cruelty.
Speaking after the case, RSPCA inspector Claire Fisher told the Echo the case was one of the worst she had investigated in 13 years on the job.
She said: “I’m just very pleased that the courts have taken these vile acts seriously. This dog suffered for months at Sharp’s hands, and the moment I first saw her there was no way I was getting close to her.
“This is a breed that is so loving and wants human contact but she was cowering in the back of the kennel.”
Peter Mitchell, prosecuting on behalf of the RSPCA, told the court Inspector Fisher was made aware of the case on January 12, 2016, by a vet concerned over the burns on Daisy’s head and body.
He said: “On seeing the dog it was on strong pain relief and appeared very nervous and was shaking in the kennel.
“When (Insp Fisher) attempted to touch the dog she cowered away and snapped. The inspector described seeing an extensive scabbed area over the top of the head and neck with a particularly raw area at the middle of the top of the head. She was advised that the burns were full skin thickness.”
The court heard Inspector Fisher was made aware of concerns relating to two other occasions in June and December 2015, when the broken bones were discovered.
Sharp, formerly a well-known DJ in Moreton, Wirral, claimed he had accidentally caused the injuries by standing on Daisy and pulling on her lead.
However Mr Mitchell read evidence from RSPCA vet Dr Sean Taylor, who said the injuries were similar to those normally seen in a road traffic collision.
He told the court: “Dr Taylor notes that the ribs are designed to protect vital organs and therefore are good at absorbing energy and difficult to break.
“He goes on to indicate that due to the fact that there are rib fractures on either side, it is his opinion that they would not have occurred at the same time as indicated by the defendant in his interview but on separate occasions.”
The case had been delayed after Sharp made court based police officers aware that he had been threatened on the way into the building ahead of his sentence.
Sentence: jailed for 16 weeks.Banned from owning animals for 15 years (expires 2027).
#TheList Emily Till, born c. 1984, and Steven Watkins, born c. 1986, of New Road, Far Forest, near Kidderminster DY14 9TQ – left their two dogs without food and in an emaciated state.
Emily Till and partner Steven Watkins were found guilty of neglecting Staffy Bruno and husky Demon.
The RSPCA received a complaint in January 2016 about two dogs in poor condition, and inspector Suzanne Smith was sent out to the house.
She said: “We received complaints about the condition of the two dogs, and on that first visit I was shocked to see the state of them. Both Bruno and Demon were so thin I could see all their bones protruding, even despite Demon’s thick coat.
“It later transpired that Demon was suffering with non-regenerative anaemia caused by his extremely thin body condition.
“Bruno weighed little over 11kg at seizure and Demon just weighed 14kg, practically half of what they should ideally weigh.”
After a vet certified that both dogs were suffering, police removed Bruno and Demon and placed them the RSPCA’s care.
Inspector Smith said: “Both Till and Watkins refused to admit any wrongdoing, but since being cared for by the RSPCA, both dogs are doing so well and are up to their optimum, healthy weights.
“I am very pleased to say that Demon, the husky, has been rehomed already as he was signed over to us shortly after we were called. But following yesterday’s sentencing, I’m delighted that now Bruno can also be found his forever home too.”
Sentencing: Till – 18-week curfew and £500 costs. Watkins – 150 hours of community service over 12 months; £750 costs.
Both were disqualified from keeping dogs for five years and deprived or ownership of the dogs.
The pair were given 28 days to rehome another dog which they had taken on before the trial.
Speaking after the case, RSPCA inspector Sophie Long said: “Laddie had severe injuries to his face and body consistent with being used for badger baiting, and was suffering a great deal when he was removed by police and placed in our care.
“He wasn’t the only animal to suffer for Ben Wilson’s enjoyment.
“Wilson’s own hunting diary, seized by police from his home, along with posts on social media, documented the animals he had caused to suffer and die.
“Nine bull lurcher puppies were living in an unsuitable environment at Wilson’s home, it seems likely bred with the intention of being used to inflict suffering, for his pleasure, in the same way.
“I’m very pleased that we will now be able to seek great new homes for these dogs where they will not be caused to suffer, or be forced to be the cause of suffering for other animals.”
Sentence: 24 weeks in prison; costs of £750 and a victim surcharge of £115; disqualified from keeping any animals indefinitely, with no appeal against the ban allowed for at least ten years.
Update 06/07/20: the Bournemouth Echo reports that persistent criminal Toby Roberts was given a 12-week curfew order after stealing phones worth £3,200 from the O2 store. He was also ordered to pay £3,638 compensation.