Dudley, West Midlands: David and Dianne Roberts and Naomi Heydon

#TheList David Roberts, born 23/01/1968, Dianne Roberts, born 26/05/1964, and Naomi Georgina Heydon, born 04/12/1991, all of 12 Turls Street, Sedgley, Dudley DY3 1HH – kept four dogs in appalling conditions and failed to take a poorly fifth dog to the vet

Irresponsible Naomi Heydon, whose dog Honey was put to sleep on welfare grounds
Irresponsible Naomi Heydon, whose dog Honey was put to sleep on welfare grounds

RSPCA officers found the pets in ‘appalling’ conditions when they raided the property shared by married couple David and Dianne Roberts and Dianne’s daughter Naomi Heydon.

Two German shepherds and two German shepherd husky crosses were kept outside in pens filled with urine and faeces and at the time had no access to water.

A Jack Russell called Honey, who lived inside the house was found to have gnawed away at a tumour and had not been taken to the vets.

When the dog was rescued it was decided she was in such a bad condition she should be put to sleep.

The trio admitted nine charges each relating to causing unnecessary suffering to animals and failing to meet their needs at Birmingham Magistrates Court.

Mr Rafe Turner, prosecuting on behalf of the RSPCA, told how the dogs suffered with a range of problems, including dental disease, ear infections, and skin conditions.

On a scale of one to nine, with one being emaciated, one of the dogs scored two and another 2.5, Mr Turner said.

Mr Turner said: “At the time of intervention there was no evidence the dogs (outside) had access to fresh water.

“They weren’t able to display normal behaviour patterns simply because they were kept for so long in these pens.

“They were not taken out on a regular basis for exercise.

“Six dogs were neglected in various ways. They were kept in appalling conditions. Four were kept outside in squalid conditions.”

When questioned, Mrs Roberts said the dogs in the pens were mostly the responsibility of her husband as she struggled to get outside due to mobility problems and the ‘decking was slippy’.

Mr Roberts said he let the dogs out for 15 minutes a day and said the dogs weren’t taken to the vets because it was ‘too expensive’.

Heydon, who owned Honey, claimed she was ‘going to do something about it’ but that the RSPCA came before she could.

Mr Turner said: “It is quite obvious the dogs should have received veterinary care.

“The environment was wholly unsuitable and sadly one dog had to be put to sleep.”

The trio were due to be sentenced on 31 May 2017 but the newspaper failed to report on the outcome and our Freedom of Information request to the court was refused on data protection grounds.

Express and Star

Amulree, Perthshire: Heather and Patrick Devaney

#TheList Heather and Patrick Devaney, Amulree, Perthshire – kept two springer spaniel puppies in squalor

Heather and Patrick Devaney guilty of dog abuse
Patrick and Heather Devaney apparently pursued an alternative lifestyle to the detriment of their poor dogssel

The Devaneys were supposed to be looking after their children and pets when they exposed them to disgusting filth as they pursued an “alternative lifestyle.”

The couple admitted there was excrement and urine on the floor, bedding was soiled, old foodstuffs lay around, mould and fungus was growing, and the house was dangerously cluttered.

Heather Devaney admitted that between 21 February and 21 April, 2016, when she was responsible for looking after two springer spaniels, she failed to take reasonable steps to care for them.

In addition, she admitted failing to treat ear and eye infections and permitted the dogs’ coats to remain heavily soiled with excrement and urine.

The court was given graphic details of the starving and filthy conditions her springer spaniels were kept in.

Fiscal depute Craig Donald told Perth Sheriff Court that the “alternative lifestyle” couple’s remote home was found to be in a disgusting condition when the landlord visited to fix a boiler.

Mr Donald said: “On entering, he noted an overpowering smell of faeces in the property. Old foodstuffs and mould were spread around the kitchen.

“The property was cluttered with objects which would be hazardous to children. It was in a squalid condition and that’s what prompted him to send an eviction notice to both accused.

“There were two malnourished springer spaniels. There was excrement covering the floor. The first dog had faecal contamination of the abdomen, legs and tail.

“Both ears were infected. The coat was covered in stale urine. It had overgrown hair and nails. It was apparent the dogs had not been exercised.

“The second animal again was emaciated and had matted ears. Neither of these animals had adequate nutrition for months. They had lived in an environment contaminated with urine and faeces for a prolonged period.

“I would ask the court to take into account in sentencing, the extreme suffering these animals appear to have undergone.”

Sheriff Gillian Wade fined Mrs Devaney £540 in respect of the dog cruelty – but admonished the couple for neglecting the children.

She said: “This is a difficult case. The children were exposed to very extreme conditions of squalor and it almost beggars belief you could allow the property to get into such a condition.”

Sentence: Heather Devaney was fined £540 in respect of dog cruelty and banned from keeping animals for 5 years. The couple was admonished for child cruelty and walked free from court.

The Sun

London NW9: Elizabeth Blore and brother Christopher Blore

#TheList serial hoarder Elizabeth Blore, born c. 1956, of 111A Valley Drive, Kingsbury, London NW9 9NT – breached an ASBO prohibiting her from feeding feral cats

Serial hoarder Elizabeth Blore of Valley Drive, London NW9, was caught breaching an ASBO prohibiting her from feeding cats
Serial hoarder Elizabeth Blore of Valley Drive, London NW9, was caught breaching an ASBO prohibiting her from feeding cats

Elizabeth Blore admitted breaching an ASBO imposed at Willesden Magistrates’ Court on 24 May 2012 prohibiting her from keeping and feeding cats.

Blore and her brother Christopher were evicted in 2012 after neighbours reported a ‘putrid smell’ caused by the piles of cat faeces in the garden and in the house.

They were told not to return to the house as council workers embarked on a three-month fumigation, during which mountains of rubbish was removed.

Serial hoarder Elizabeth Blore of Valley Drive, London NW9, was caught breaching an ASBO prohibiting her from feeding cats

Skeletons of at least 15 dead cats were found rotting under binbags during the clean-up effort.

Martha Godwin, prosecuting, said: ‘Ms Blore is subject to an anti-social behaviour order which prohibits her from feeding or keeping cats.

‘Police offers and animal welfare officers attended her address on 4 May [2017] to see if she was contravening the order.

‘They went into the property and there was excrement from the cats in the living room.

‘An adult cat was found upstairs with one-month-old kittens.

Defending herself, Blore said: ‘The cat was a stray and the kittens were four weeks old.

‘They weren’t weaned and were too small to go in the garden.

‘They have taken the cats away now so I don’t have any cats.’

Total fines and costs of £255. 

The Mirror

Llanrwst, Conwy, North Wales: Dylan Edwards

#TheList Dylan Marcus Edwards, born 04/02/1967, of Plas Helyg, Llanrwst LL26 0ES – bludgeoned a tame feral cat to death at hotel

Cat killer Dylan Marcus Edwards of Llanrwst, North Wales
Cat killer Dylan Edwards pictured outside court

Edwards pleaded guilty to the charge of causing a cat unnecessary suffering.

The case followed the killing of a cat in the kitchen of the Royal Oak Hotel in Betws y Coed – which prompted widespread anger among the local community and on social media.

The court heard how the animal was beaten to death with a piece of wood on December 2., 2016.

Edwards, who had served as a Head Chef and Catering Manager at the hotel, was dismissed by management before court proceedings.

RSPCA inspector Phil Lewis said: “To bludgeon a cat to death in this way is a heinous crime, and it is no surprise there was such widespread condemnation to this act across North Wales.

“With no body or witnesses to the incident, this was a complex investigation, but RSPCA Cymru worked hard to ensure legal ramifications were faced for this despicable action.

“The poor cat was chased, caught and beaten, in what must have been a terrifying experience, causing unimaginable pain. Ignorance of the law is no excuse for such cruelty.”

Sentencing: 18-week prison sentence, suspended for two years; 250 hours of unpaid work; £750 in costs. Disqualified from owning any animal for four years.


Edenbridge, Kent: Steven Dicker

#TheList Steven Dicker, born 07/10/1963, of 4 Wellingtonia Way, Edenbridge, Sevenoaks TN8 5RE – stole a 17-year-old Jack Russell terrier named Lady, battered her with a hammer and dumped her in the park

Dicker launched a brutal attack on an elderly pet dog he stole from her home
Dicker launched a brutal attack on an elderly pet dog he stole from her home

Dicker was  jailed for six months for causing suffering to the elderly dog.

The horrific  incident took place on Wednesday 21 September 2016.

Despite her desperate owners’ social media appeals, Lady was never found.

Dicker  had pleaded guilty to a charge of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal, but had denied breaking into a neighbour’s house to steal the dog.

He was found guilty of the second charge after a trial at Sevenoaks Magistrates Court in April 2017 and was sentenced to six months in prison.

Source: KentLive (article removed)

Swadlincote, Derbyshire: Simon Nall

#TheList Simon J Nall, age unknown, of 77 Stanhope Road, Swadlincote DE11 9BG – left his piebald colt horse to die an agonising death

Magistrates said Simon Nall “showed no remorse” over the death of his pony as they handed him a lifetime ban on keeping equines.

Simon Nall did not attend to his piebald colt horse named Storm for several months and pleaded guilty to failing to take reasonable steps to prevent another person from causing unnecessary suffering.

The court was told Nall owned Storm, who was kept with four other horses belonging to his mother, Julia Nall, and sister Rachel Nall, in a field in Valley Road, Overseal. Julia and Rachel Nall were prosecuted separately and convicted for their part in the cruelty.

The horse appeared to have been dead for some days when found and there were signs to suggest that he had struggled in his last few days before he passed away.

A pile of faeces under his tail suggested he had been in that position for some time.

He was underweight and was in a poor condition. His hooves were 14 to 20 centimetres long and he had been suffering from chronic laminitis.

A vet concluded it would have taken several months for Storm to get in that state.

The court was told that, in interview, Nall admitted he did not go and see Storm very often and could not remember the last time he saw him.

Horse killer Simon Nall of Swadlincote is banned from keeping equines for life

Derby Magistrates’ Court chairman of the bench Philip Hickson said: “This is one of the worst cases of animal cruelty this bench has seen. It was your responsibility to prevent this. You made no attempt to check on the animal and you showed no remorse.

“You accept now that you were personally responsible for the agonising death of this animal.”

Nall’s solicitor John McGregor said in court that Nall believed his mother, Julia Nall – who he did not live with – had been looking after Storm and so he did not attend to him regularly.

Sentencing: 18-week prison sentence suspended for two years; 250 hours of unpaid work; three-month curfew; total of £515 costs and charges. Lifetime disqualification on keeping equines.

ITV News
Horse & Hound

Lofthouse, West Yorkshire: Jordan Taylor

#TheList Jordan Alicia Taylor, born 16/01/1994, of 29 Park Drive, Lofthouse WF3 3ET – starved a Labrador to death

Pictured is dog killer Jordan Alicia Taylor from Wakefield and Bumper, the Labrador she starved to death
Dog killer Jordan Alicia Taylor from Wakefield and Bumper, the Labrador she starved to death

Jordan Tayor, a member of the Young Kennel Club (YKC) pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to two dogs. Taylor was prosecuted after a Labrador called Bumper was found dead in a shed in her garden.

Labrador Bumper was starved to death by Jordan Alicia Taylor from Wakefield

An Estrela Mountain Dog named Sha was also discovered on the property suffering from severe weight loss and was returned to her breeder, Trisha Dean.

In addition, the remains of a starved rabbit were found in a cage at her house.

Taylor had been handling show dogs since she was about eight years old and had described herself as ‘a natural talent.’

Pictured is dog killer Jordan Alicia Taylor from Wakefield
Taylor is banned from keeping animals for life

Bumper was bred and previously owned by Tracy Douglas and she told OUR DOGS magazine, ‘Basically me and Miss Taylor were very good friends. We went to dog shows together and on holidays. I counted her as a close friend.

‘She asked me if she would let me have a Labrador and she asked me if she could have Bumper.’

Labrador Bumper was starved to death by Jordan Alicia Taylor from Wakefield
Bumper’s emaciated body was found in a shed in Taylor’s garden

Ms Douglas, who is based in Belfast, explained, ‘She could campaign the dog on our behalf in England.

‘We were in regular contact and she would send me photos and tell me about all the silly things that young Labradors do.

‘I was supposed to meet up with her at the Manchester show but she didn’t turn up. I was told she hadn’t been well. She told me that Bumper slept in her daughter’s bedroom and followed the daughter everywhere.

‘I found out that the Estrela was only 18kg at nine months so I made up a story to see Bumper. She kept using delaying tactics so I contacted a friend who lived near her in Wakefield and he was told that Bumper was not there.

Pictured is dog killer Jordan Alicia Taylor from Wakefield

‘The RSPCA were called in and he was found lying in a shed in the back garden. The body had been there for a minimum of three weeks. She admitted the dog had been dead for two weeks.

‘She said the dog had liver issues but the post-mortem revealed it was a healthy dog that had been starved. It is a shame we could not get it out in time.

‘Words can not express how I am feeling. We want justice for Bumper and the Estrela. I don’t understand it as there is a network of people to help her. Ninety percent of her friends on Facebook are dog people.

‘She was laughing before she went into court as if she did not have a care in the world. If she did not want the dog why didn’t she just take it to the vets and dump it?’

A lifetime ban was put in place and Taylor was sentenced on June 8, 2017.

Ms Douglas concluded, ‘What hurts the most is that she blatantly lied to my face and told me Bumper was alive.’

Sentencing: 17-week custodial sentence suspended for two years. 200 hours of community service, 30 sessions of rehabilitation and fines totalling £315. Banned from keeping animals for life.

Our Dogs

Tenbury Wells, WorcesterSHIRE: Mark and Jennifer Stange

#TheList Mark Stange, born c. 1965, and wife Jennifer, born 1954, of Kyreside, Tenbury Wells WR15 8BX – left their West Highland terriers to suffer an untreated skin condition

Mark and Jennifer Stange from Tenbury Wells, Worcestershire, failed to treat their dogs' painful skin conditions. Photo shows the two dogs before treatment and 
Jennifer Stange

Mark and Jenny Stange were found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to Westies Star and Sadie between February 28 and May 28, 2016, contrary to Section 4 of the Animal Welfare Act 2006.

Mark Stange told the court he did not believe the dogs were suffering.

Mark and Jennifer Stange from Tenbury Wells, Worcestershire, failed to treat their dogs' painful skin conditions. Star before treatment.
Irresponsible pet owner Mark Stange told the court he did not believe Sadie (pictured) and Star were suffering.

When RSPCA Inspector Suzi Smith first saw the dogs she was shocked to see them with hardly any hair and crusty, greasy, infected and inflamed skin with scabs.

Both are now recovering well, one doing of them thriving to such an extent with a new owner that she won the ‘Best Rescue’ category in a dog show.

Mark and Jennifer Stange from Tenbury Wells, Worcestershire, failed to treat their dogs' painful skin conditions. Star after treatment and care by the RSPCA
Sadie has recovered in the care of the RSPCA.

Inspector Smith, who was one of the judges, said: “Star’s new owner brought her along to the local RSPCA branch dog show as part of the River Carnival in Hereford where I was judging alongside Wye Valley Vets.

“I had no idea she was coming and honestly didn’t recognise her with all her hair- needless to say I ended with tears in my eyes.

“Pet owners need to realise that they have a responsibility to care for their animals. That includes ensuring any health issues are dealt with promptly to avoid distress to animals in their care.”

Sentencing: 12-month community order with a 30-day rehabilitation order; ordered to pay a £60 fine, £600 costs, plus a victim surcharge. Banned from keeping dogs for five years, with the right of appeal after three (ban expires May 2022).

Worcester News

Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria: Sam Simmonite

#TheList Sam Simmonite, born c. 1976, of 8F Egerton Court, Barrow-in-Furness LA14 2TU – allowed his dog to launch a fatal attack on a cat.

Sam Simmonite of Barrow, Cumbria, did nothing to stop his dog attacking a helpless ginger cat named O'Malley
Sam Simmonite did nothing to stop his dog attacking a helpless ginger cat named O’Malley

Wildlife persecutor Simmonite was convicted of causing unnecessary suffering after failing to control his dog, a black lurcher named Stan, and allowing him to maul a ginger cat known as O’Malley.

The incident took place at around midnight on December 6, 2016, in Steamer Street, Barrow.

RSPCA inspector Chris Towler said: “This case was not only a sickening act that caused suffering to O’Malley, but also caused significant distress to O’Malley’s owner, Sammi Thompson, who found out about what happened to her much-loved pet via social media.

“O’Malley not only suffered during the attack but for some time after – we know that he managed to get from the top of a recycling bin where he was left injured to a nearby building site where he was discovered dead the following day.

“I hope that the sentence handed out to Simmonite serves as a reminder that society will not tolerate such blatant acts of cruelty, and will serve as a deterrent to those who choose to use their dogs in this manner.

Sam Simmonite of Barrow, Cumbria, did nothing to stop his dog attacking a helpless ginger cat named O'Malley
“Anxiety sufferer” Sam Simmonite is now banned from keeping any animal for five years.

Michael Graham, defending, pleaded with the bench not to impose the ban.

He said: “There is no suggestion that he ill-treated or under-fed his dog, or that it was a risk to the public. This was an isolated incident.

“He has anxiety and depression and he had an anxiety attack on the way to court on Tuesday when he had to turn around and go home.

“He has owned a dog all through his adult years and it has a great therapeutic quality for him and he does not want to be without that.”

Simmonite interrupted the magistrates’ sentencing to launch into a verbal tirade of abuse.

The foul-mouthed, expletive-ridden rant included Simmonite calling the bench chairman, Chris Harris, “four-eyes”, before shouting: “You’ll never stop me owning dogs.”

Sentencing: 20 weeks’ imprisonment for the animal cruelty offence, as well as an additional two-week custodial sentence for failing to surrender to bail at the appointed time. Total of £1,023.40 costs and charges. Banned from owning any animal for a minimum of five years.

The Mail

Chesterfield, Derbyshire: Martin Johnson

#TheList Martin Johnson, born c. 1986, of Wenlock Walk, Grassmoor, Chesterfield S42 5BJ – subjected his dog to a prolonged beating

Martin Johnson from Grassmoor, Derbyshire, was recorded beating his dog Sooty
Martin Johnson from Grassmoor, Derbyshire, was recorded beating his dog Sooty

Johnson, a backyard breeder who sells puppies on various Facebook groups, pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to the dog, named Sooty, at Chesterfield magistrates’ court on Thursday, May 18 2017.

Sooty was taken into the care of the RSPCA, and was found to have a fractured toe as well as lumps on his spine and on the top of his head.

Martin Johnson from Grassmoor, Derbyshire, was recorded beating his dog Sooty
Sooty recovered from the injuries inflicted on him by violent thug Martin Johnson and was made available for rehoming by the RSPCA

Prosecuting, Andy Cash, said: “On February 9 2017 the RSPCA received an audio clip which was the defendant shouting at the dog which is now known to be Sooty.

“The defendant was arrested and the dogs were recovered.”

In the police interview, Johnson made full admissions and said: “I did not beat him up I slapped him.

“I did give him a bit of a pasting.

“I dragged him outside. I went over the top with him.

“I raised my fist at him.”

A few seconds of the audio clip of Johnson shouting at Sooty was played during court. Johnson could be heard shouting at the dog: “If I tell you to do something I expect you to do it.”

The dog could also be heard to be in distress when Johnson said: “Shut it.”

Speaking about Johnson’s cruelty, RSPCA inspector Rachel Leafe said, “The audio isn’t very nice at all. It lasts for around five minutes and Sooty can clearly be heard squealing and whimpering loudly while being beaten, and Johnson can be heard shouting and delivering blows to the dog.

“It would have been difficult for someone to have to listen to the beating, however we are grateful that they had the initiative to record it as it gave us the evidence we needed to prosecute.”

“What it came down to was the fact that Sooty was going to the toilet inside the flat. Johnson said in interview that he gave the dog ‘a bit of a pasting’ as a result, and that he went ‘over the top’,”

Inspector Leafe said. “He also said in interview that he grabbed the dog by his testicles and said, ‘You don’t like that, do you?’

“He later called our national cruelty helpline and admitted the incidents, that he had also pinned Sooty down by his ears to ‘incapacitate’ him, and that it was because he was always messing in the flat.

“What Sooty went through would have been horrific and he would have been terrified to be around Johnson. But despite what he went through, Sooty is a lovely dog. Johnson told us that he was aggressive, but since he has been in our care he hasn’t shown any nasty traits at all. Sooty is so friendly and we hope he will find a lovely new home soon.”

12-week prison sentence suspended for 12 months; total fines and charges of £315. Eight-year ban on keeping animals (expires May 2024). 

Dogs Monthly
Derbyshire Times