#TheList Aaron Ray, born c. 2002, of 29 Mayfield Road, Sunderland SR4 0NE – stabbed a pet cockatiel to death in a fit of rage
Aaron Ray left the unnamed family pet with fatal injuries after plunging a knife into the back of her neck.
Northumbria Police officers found the deceased bird after being called to Ray’s home following reports of a disturbance. When questioned, Ray displayed an astonishing lack of remorse for his sickening cruelty, insisting “it’s just a bird”.
In court, Ray pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to an animal.
PC Peter Baker, wildlife officer at Northumbria Police, said Ray’s conviction should act as a reminder that animal cruelty is a criminal offence.
He said: “Aaron Ray showed a total disregard for the welfare of this bird and inflicted catastrophic injuries that it could not survive from.
“This kind of behaviour is not only reckless and upsetting, but a criminal offence and that’s the lesson that Ray now must learn.
“We are a nation of animal lovers, so it is upsetting to come across incidents such as this where the defendant has caused inevitable and unnecessary suffering to an animal.”
Sentencing: 12-week custodial sentence, suspended for one year. 15-year ban from owning animals.
#TheList Jack Christopher Green, born 15/10/1993, of Sycamore Avenue, Golcar, near Huddersfield, but with links to Longwood, Huddersfield, Leeds and Newmarket – subjected a Patterjack X Dachshund puppy to a life of pain and abuse
Agricultural worker Green was prosecuted by the CPS following an investigation by Suffolk Police. The court heard how he subjected the tiny dog, known as Pippin, to repeated acts of cruelty between 18 January 2019 and 2 May 2019.
Pippin was five months old when she was discovered by police outside an address in Newmarket on 1 May 2019. At the time, she was sporting a white bandage on her right foreleg and Green claimed that she may have fallen from a vehicle. He said that he took her to the vets who told him to treat the injury himself, therefore placing a makeshift bandage on her leg with the use of duct tape and a toilet roll holder.
Officers were not happy with her injury, treatment and his explanation so they seized Pippin and sought immediate veterinary attention. The vet established that her right foreleg showed a severe leg injury that would require some intensive treatment.
In the autumn Green was charged at magistrates court with causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal and pleaded guilty to this charge.
Pippin was rehomed having initially being placed into the care of the RSPCA and attended a vet every two days for three months so she could have her bandages changed. Following her rehoming, Pippin continues to learn to interact with her new family and other animals.
PC Victoria McNamara said: “As a Wildlife Crime Officer for Suffolk Police, I have a specific interest in animal welfare. Animals of all kinds are often hidden victims of crime and animal abuse can be a gateway to other offences being committed, it is wholly unacceptable to cause suffering to any animal and we will investigate and prosecute those offenders, bringing them to justice.
“In the case of Pippin, she was a little puppy who had for the first few months of her life suffered cruelty at the hands of her owner. She was not in the best condition, she weighed 3.1kg and was on pain relief for quite a few weeks due to her fractured leg. Over the last few months with correct care, adequate nutrition and lots of love, Pippin has flourished.
“Alongside A/PS Rebecca Webster, the rural crime unit and colleagues at West Yorkshire police roads policing unit in making the arrest we have all made a difference to the life of a puppy. Coupled with the expertise of Criminal Justice Unit Case Management Officer Jo Foley, it really has been a team effort in bringing the defendant to justice over his actions against this little dog.”
Sentencing: 12-week custodial sentence; £200 compensation. Disqualified from owning animals for just five years (expires June 2025).
#TheList John Bowers, born c. 1989, of 201 Albertbridge Road, Belfast BT5 4PU – physically abused a dog
John Bowers, who also faced charges of assault and racial harassment, was seen grabbing a Staffy-type dog by the scruff of the neck and throwing him over a garden wall. He then lifted the dog up a second time and threw him down on his back.
The fate or identity of the dog is unknown but our photo shows Bowers’ dog, Dre, who is believed to be dead.
In June 2020 Bowers was jailed for 10 months after pleading guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to an animal in addition to two counts of harassment and common assault.
Defence barrister Sean Mullan detailed his client’s battle with alcohol addiction.
“He’s keen to draw a line under all these matters,” counsel said.
Imposing five months custody for the offences, Mr Hamill ordered Bowers to serve a further five months from previously suspended prison terms.
The judge also imposed two-year restraining orders for the racially-aggravated harassment, and banned Bowers from keeping any animal for five years.
Sentencing: custodial. Five-year ban on keeping an animal.
#TheList Latoyah Donna Stones (aka Lottie Devine), born 24/02/1992, of Hillcrest Road, Yeovil BA21 – neglected and starved a dog
Mother-of-three Stones caused unnecessary suffering to the female dog, known as Boston, by failing to explore or address her poor condition between March and September 2019.
The Dogue de Bordeaux had been taken to Vets4Pets in Yeovil on September 22, 2019 by Stones, who claimed the severely malnourished dog was a stray she had found.
Boston, who weighed just 30kg at the time, was taken to St Giles Animal Rescue by the local authority dog warden and social media appeals for information regarding the dog were made.
Stones’ name was put forward by members of the public who identified her as being Boston’s owner, which she later admitted when interviewed.
RSPCA inspector Jo Daniel, who investigated for the animal welfare charity, said: “The vet who examined Boston found her to be very thin, weighing just 30kg when a similar dog in healthy condition could be expected to weigh between 40 to 45kg, and said the dog’s condition was because of a failure to provide adequate food to maintain a normal bodily condition.
“In conclusion, the vet found no underlying causes that would have led to her being in the state she was, adding that she would have suffered for a number of months and have suffered hunger and fatigue during that time.
“This picture, which was taken ten days after she went into the care of the rescue centre, shows what an awful condition she was in.
“Thankfully, she’s now recovered thanks to simply being given an appropriate diet and the care she needs.”
Boston has since been rehomed.
Sentencing: 20 days of rehabilitation activity requirement; total of £365 costs and charges. Banned from keeping dogs for five years.