#TheList Alice Mary Louise Jones, born 25/08/1997, of Saintbridge Road, Longford, Gloucester GL2 9FN – starved a pony who was found collapsed in a barn
Jones, previously of Raleigh Close, Gloucester, was found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to a pony, named Blue, after failing to investigate the cause of his weight loss between February 19, 2016 and March 3 2016, contrary to Section 4 of the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
The RSPCA was contacted by a concerned member of the public who had spotted Blue in a collapsed and emaciated state in a barn at Packthorn Farm, Whitminster Lane, Frampton on Severn.
Inspector Mark Lewis said: “Sadly Blue had been starved to the point when he was incredibly thin and unable to stand.
“Unfortunately he was in such a terrible state that he had to be immediately put to sleep to ease his suffering.
“The post mortem showed his condition wasn’t because of an underlying disease – it was simply down to the fact he wasn’t given the food he needed.
“Owners have a responsibility of care to their animals. To allow an animal to get into such a shocking state is inexcusable.”
Sentencing: 180 hours of unpaid work; total of £660 costs and charges. Disqualified from keeping horses for five years (expires January 2022).
#TheList Brittany Sandra Louise McCallum (DoB 16/06/1997) of 88 Marswood Green, Hamilton ML3 9EE – allowed her pet dog Buster to become very thin
Single mother McCallum, originally from East Kilbride and with links to Newmains and also Watford, failed to provide the necessary care for Buster and was charged with animal cruelty following a Scottish SPCA investigation.
Commenting on the investigation and court case, Inspector Heather Lawson said: “It was instantly clear to me that the dog was being neglected.
“His ribs, spine and pelvic bones were prominent and there was no food or water available for the dog.
“I took the dog straight to the vet where I was informed that he had no fat deposits anywhere suggesting an extended period of inadequate nutrition and weighed only 15.3kgs.
“We welcome the fact that McCallum has been dealt with by the court and the sentence handed down.
“We hope she will give serious consideration about her suitability to care for other animals in the future”.
Buster recovered from his ordeal and made available for rehoming.
Sentence: 60 hours of community work; banned from keeping animals for just three years (expires January 2020).
#TheList John Christopher Bainbridge, born 28/12/1982, and Donna Kennedy, born 09/01/1984, of Wheatley Hill, Durham – locked their dog in a dark, filthy shed to starve to death
Bainbridge and Kennedy, who have four children between them, were found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to a male lurcher by failing to provide him with an adequate supply of food and water resulting in his death and failing to seek veterinary care and attention for his pressure sores.
RSPCA chief inspector Mark Gent said: “RSPCA inspector Aislynn Balderstone found this poor dog, emaciated in a filthy garden shed with no food or water.
“There was a concrete slab blocking the shed door preventing it from opening.
“Kennedy claimed not to have known the slab was there even though the front of the shed was only a few feet away from the kitchen window where she washed up daily.
A vet examined the dog who weighed just 12.1kg – his ideal weight would have been 18kg.
Chief inspector Gent said: “The physical and mental suffering this dog endured must have been enormous as he died alone in the dark.
“We hope by bringing this matter to court we have achieved some sort of justice for him.
Sentencing: 18 weeks’ imprisonment suspended for two years; 100 hours of unpaid work; six-month curfew order; £425 costs each. Lifetime ban on keeping all animals.
#TheList Hayley Perry, born 13/07/1966, of 3xx Teignmouth Road, Torquay TQ1 4RS – eight severely underweight dogs rescued from her two-bedroom flat
Perry, a former breeder of Akitas, Huskies and Eurasiers operating under the name Saxonike who previously lived in Marldon Road, Shiphay, was disqualified from keeping dogs after eight animals in her care were found to be seriously underweight.
The court heard that between March 7, and April 4, 2016, Perry failed to explore the cause of weight loss in eight dogs in her care contrary to Section 4 of the Animal Welfare Act 2006.Perry was found guilty of failing to meet the needs of five of the dogs by not providing a suitable environment contrary to Section 9 of the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
RSPCA inspector Jim Farr said: “People have a responsibility to look after their animals properly and to make sure all their needs are met and need to ensure they receive the proper veterinary treatment and care when they need it.”
We understand that Perry appealed against the sentence but this was unsuccessful.
Three dogs that remained in Perry’s care after conviction were confiscated. Five other dogs that were previously signed over to the RSPCA were rehabilitated and found new homes.
Sentence: £1,000 costs; banned from keeping dogs for 10 years (expires January 2027).
#TheList self-proclaimed ‘horse guru’ Jonathan Hurst, born c. 1989, of Kings Elms, Barton Stacey, Winchester, Hampshire SO21 3RG – convicted of cruelty after a pony was left with an eye injury and her tongue split open
Jonathan Hurst had claimed to be a self-taught ‘horse whisperer’ and trainer, but in January 2017 he was found guilty of two counts of causing unnecessary suffering to a pony at a yard in Hampshire.
The female pony – called Tanzin – was left with “absolutely shocking” spilt tongue and eye injuries which were not treated by a vet, the RSPCA said.
Hurst offered his services to Tanzin’s owner after portraying himself as a horse guru “with the skills to transform even the most wilful horse”, the RSPCA said.
The filly suffered “significant injuries” while under the care of Hurst at a yard in Longparish Road, Wherwell, from 9 March to 14 March 2016.
RSPCA inspector Jan Edwards said: “Tanzin had been left to suffer with absolutely shocking injuries.
“I have never seen anything like the state of her tongue.
“It’s callous to leave an animal to suffer in this way without proper veterinary treatment.”
She added Tanzin’s owner screamed when she first saw her pony’s “greyed out” eye, fearing she had been blinded.
Tanzin had refused to eat before the gash on her tongue was discovered, the RSPCA said.
Sentencing: 120 hours of unpaid work. Fined £300. No ban.
#TheList Graham John Williams, born 29/07/56, of Falcon Road, Birkenhead – gave gravely ill German Shepherd drugs and then beat her to death with shovel; his partner Violet Holmes failed to take any action to prevent the dog’s suffering
Williams fed 11-year-old German Shepherd Yarna (pictured) aspirin and paracetamol to try and kill her, before beating her over the head multiple times with a shovel. Her squeals of agony alerted neighbours who called the RSPCA.
In a separate hearing Williams’ partner Violet Holmes admitted knowing about the dog’s suffering but failing to take any action. Her lawyer said his client suffered from a range of mental health issues including depression and post traumatic stress disorder.
The lawyer described Williams as a “strong-willed man” who put his client in a difficult position because he wasn’t prepared to spend the money that would have alleviated Yarna’s suffering.
Career criminal Williams, who has a string of previous convictions for offences including affray and burglary, was sentenced for two offences of causing unnecessary suffering to the German shepherd, by subjecting her to blunt force trauma and for failing to provide veterinary treatment for an infected mammary gland tumour.
The judge told the court that he would have imposed a longer sentence on Williams if the law allowed him to and he commended the RSPCA on its work to investigate such cases.
Investigating RSPCA inspector Anthony Joynes said that the beating came to light after a member of the public heard Williams beating the dog and the dog squealing.
He said: “They were so shocked that they dialed 999 immediately.
“The dog, an 11-year-old German shepherd named Yarna, had been suffering with a melon-sized tumour and Williams decided to end things for her.
“He fed her large amounts of aspirin and paracetamol and said this was an attempt to induce an overdose. Williams then took the dog outside and beat her multiple times over the head with a shovel, eventually leading to her death.
“It was a brutal and barbaric end to her life at the hands of her owner whose responsibility it was to look after her and protect her from harm.
“It is such a horrible way to die and I can’t even begin to imagine what Yarna’s last moments would have been like – the terror and pain she must have felt would have been unbearable.”
A post mortem revealed Yarna had suffered multiple blunt force trauma injuries to the head.
Inspector Joynes added: “This was an incredibly distressing case to deal with but I’m pleased that Yarna’s suffering hasn’t gone unanswered.”
Sentencing: Williams: four months in prison; disqualified from keeping all animals for life. Holmes: four-month custodial sentence, suspended for two years; £500 in costs. Banned from keeping all animals for life.
#TheList Anne Smith, born 1956, of Little Beck Rd, Bridlington YO16 4AW, and Benjamin Johnson, born c. 1997, of Woldgate Travellers Site, Bridlington YO16 4XE – allowed their ponies to stray repeatedly onto a busy road resulting in one being killed; a little Shetland pony named Paddy was found entangled around a tree
Gypsies Smith and Johnson were found guilty of neglect following a catalogue of incidents involving their horses roaming loose next to Bessingby Hill. They ignored advice given to them by the RSPCA.
Johnson had also received an RSPCA caution for the same thing but failed to improve the situation.
The pair continued to put the lives of their horses at risk by allowing them to roam freely next to busy traffic and one of their horses ended up being killed after being hit by a car.
During the investigation, threats were made to RSPCA inspectors’ and police officers’ lives.
Sentencing: Johnson was ordered to undertake 150 hours of unpaid work and Smith to complete 40 hours of unpaid work. Both defendants were also ordered to pay £340 costs. Deprivation order for Shetland pony Paddy. No ban.
#TheList Frank Lyn Lewis (DoB 16/7/1998) of 4 Penderyn Road, Cymmer, Port Talbot SA13 3SR – stole cats from an animal sanctuary to use as “live bait” for his dogs to hunt down to kill.
Lewis broke into the Ty Nant cat sanctuary in Port Talbot late at night and stole a cage with ten cats, which were being nursed back to health by volunteers.
Georgina Buckley, prosecuting, said: “Lewis essentially used the cats for sport. He used his dogs to hunt down and kill them.
“He caused lacerations to the cats himself to try and hinder their escape.”
Miss Buckley told Swansea Crown Court that three cats were foundmauled to death in different spots near the sanctuary in Neath Port Talbot.
Four were found alive and returned but three others are still missing and presumed dead.
Ms Buckley added: “Post mortem gave the cause of death as the result of an attack and having been shaken viciously by an animal, like a dog.”
The court heard Lewis set up his sick game just two weeks after he was sentenced in a youth court for a gruesome attack on a sheep.
Lewis stole the sheep from a field and strung it up upside down to a tree, before cutting its head off with a machete. He then posed for photos next to its bloodied carcass and posted them on Facebook.
The police were alerted and Lewis, who is unemployed and on benefits, was given a referral order at Swansea Youth Court.
But he then went on to strike at the Ty Nant Cat Sanctuary just days later with a 15-year-old accomplice.
Theresa Ahmed, owner of the sanctuary, read out a victim impact statement in court, where she called Lewis “pure evil and a being without a soul.”
Ms Ahmed, who built the sanctuary on the grounds of her family home and has run it with her husband since 1990, said: “The burglary has changed my life forever.
“The sickening realisation that cats were missing and what had happened to them will remain with me for the rest of my life.”
Mr Herd, defending, said Lewis accepted responsibility for the burglary and the deaths of the cats.
He said: “Lewis concedes his dogs were trained to hunt and he knew full well about what the outcome would be.”
Mr Herd said Lewis, whose mother committed suicide five years ago, had been seen by child psychologists after decapitating a sheep, who concluded he showed “psychopathic traits” and signs of a personality disorder.
He pleaded guilty to burglary and criminal damage at Swansea Crown Court where he appeared for sentencing.
Judge Paul Hopkins told Lewis his acts added with his “extreme right-wing views on race and sexuality” meant he was “dangerous.”
Judge Hopkins said: “You tortured a sheep before beheading it, and then took a photo such was your satisfaction at what had been done.
“You then broke into a cat sanctuary and stole 10 cats. You used them as bait for your dogs. They are acts of great cruelty amounting to sadism.”
Sentence: Lewis was given 30 months in a young offenders institute. nHis 15-year-old accomplice, who was found not to have taken part in the killing of the cats, was given a nine month curfew order.
#TheList Angela Wood and husband Malcolm Wood of Popeley Farm Cottage, Muffit Lane, Gomersal, near Cleckheaton BD19 4QS – pleaded guilty to terrible neglect of donkeys and miniature Shetland ponies.
Malcolm and Angela Wood both pleaded guilty to a number of offences under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 when they appeared at Kirklees Magistrates Court in Huddersfield.
Malcolm Wood pleaded guilty to two section 9 offences relating to the poor body condition and lack of appropriate stabling for three Shetland ponies, to have taken place in June 2016, but five charges against him relating to the welfare of the five donkeys were dropped.
Angela Wood pleaded guilty to one section 4 offence relating to the extremely poor state of the donkeys’ hooves and three section 9 offences relating to the inadequate living environment, body condition and lack of worm control of the ponies and donkeys, to have taken place between January 2016 and June 2016.
After initial advice to help improve the conditions from World Horse Welfare, the RSPCA and The Donkey Sanctuary were called to the property in June 2016 over concerns for the welfare of four miniature Shetlands and it became apparent that there were also donkeys at the site.
Some had been neglected to the point that they couldn’t even walk. After a veterinary surgeon certified the five donkeys and three Shetlands to be suffering, a team from World Horse Welfare and the Donkey Sanctuary joined the RSPCA in removing the animals.
RSPCA inspector Samantha Weston said: “The state of the poor ponies was awful, but to then make the discovery of the donkeys was shocking – their hooves were some of the longest I’ve ever seen.
“One was in very poor body condition and several were riddled with worms. Another donkey had to be dug out of his stable because the combination of filthy bedding and faeces had built up so much he couldn’t even be led out of the door.
“I am delighted to hear that the ponies and donkeys that were removed are now doing well in the expert care of the Donkey Sanctuary and World Horse Welfare.”
Sentencing: six-month community order each. Total costs and charges of £185 each. Both were given an indefinite ban on owning all equines
#TheList Matthew James Sparks, born May 1987, of Old Quarry Road, Shirehampton, Bristol BS11 – caught on camera repeatedly torturing his housemate’s cat
Architect Matthew Sparks, who has his own firm Sparks Architecture based at 48 King’s Parade Avenue, Bristol BS8, admitted causing unnecessary suffering by inflicting physical abuse on a cat named Elfie and engaging in acts of mental torture.
Elfie’s owner was suspicious due to changes in her pet’s behaviour so installed hidden cameras.
Shocking footage showed Sparks dropping the helpless cat to the ground, aggressively gripping her by the scruff of the neck and following her around the house just to torment her.
RSPCA inspector Dan Hatfield said: ‘This was one of the most disturbing cases I have ever worked on.
‘Matthew targeted Elfie repeatedly when they were home alone together and on the footage can be seen dropping the cat to the ground, kicking out at her, aggressively gripping her by the scruff of the neck and relentlessly following her around.
‘It was very weird behaviour. It is really distressing to think about the fear and pain Elfie experienced in her own home.
‘If it wasn’t for her owner deciding to install the hidden cameras no one would have known what was going on.’
Sentencing: fined £300 fine and ordered to do 200 hours of unpaid work. Banned from keeping animals for life.