#TheList Martin Davidson, born 12/10/1995, of Abbotsford Road, Lochore, Lochgelly KY5 8DT- trained four dogs to violently bait wild animals including badgers ; failed to treat his dogs’ fighting injuries
Davidson kept videos of his dogs viciously attacking foxes and sickeningly posed for pictures with the injured or dead animals.
The father-of-two trained his dogs for animal fighting including badger baiting.
He pleaded guilty to the charge along with failing to provide veterinary treatment to an injured dog in his care.
Davidson was investigated by the Scottish SPCA after the charity received intelligence about his behaviour.
A sheriff deferred Davidson’s sentencing until October 2, 2020, but issued him with an interim ban of owning, keeping or dealing with dogs for the next five years.
Three of the dogs involved in the case were male, brindle coloured bull lurchers named Tramp, Mojo and Sid. The other was a female, white and tan, Staffordshire bull terrier named Lady.
The dogs were found injured as a result of the hunting and are now in the care of the SSPCA where they will be rehabilitated.
An SSPCA special investigations unit undercover inspector, who cannot be named, said: “We received intelligence that Davidson was keeping and training dogs for the purposes of animal fighting.
“We obtained a search warrant and gained entry to the home of Davidson where we found the four dogs.
“The Staffordshire bull terrier, Lady, was in the house. She had significant scarring to her muzzle and lower jaw. These injuries are consistent with animal fighting, in particular badger baiting.
“The three lurchers were found outdoors in a kennel and run in the rear garden, far too small for their size and breed. Two had obvious, fresh injuries to their ears and heads.
“We also found animal fighting paraphernalia at Davidson’s residence.
“This included hunting gear, blood-stained wellies and a spot lamp commonly using for lamping with dogs, which is hunting at night.
“Multiple images were discovered of his dogs pictured with dead animals at night. Some featured the dogs viciously gripping foxes between their jaws.
“During interview, Davidson admitted that the four dogs were not registered with a vet and did not receive any medication or treatment to ease their suffering from any of the injuries they had sustained
“Other photos showed Lady, Tramp, Mojo and Sid in the back of Davidson’s vehicle at night with fresh injuries. Our expert vets determined these were consistent with animal fighting, specifically with badgers and foxes.
“The disregard that Davidson had for the welfare of the wild animals he forced his dogs to fight, and for his own dogs, is unfathomable. The dogs are in our care and are currently receiving the rehabilitation they need.
“We are pleased the sheriff issued the immediate ban which will stop Davidson owning or having any dealings with dogs.
“By ordering this, the sheriff is recognising the immediate threat that Davidson poses to any canine in his care. We look forward to the full sentencing in this case.
#TheList Jamie Dennis Gordon Elsworthy, also known as Jamie Hill, born c. 1970, of Bath Road, Bournemouth – hurled a dog against a wall in a beer garden after hitting and kicking him
Elsworthy admitted committing the offence in Woodend Road in Bournemouth on April 14, 2019.
It took place in the beer garden of the Buffalo Bar when it was in Woodend Road in Winton. The bar has since been relocated.
Police issued a CCTV appeal at the time because officers were unable to identify Elsworthy or the owner of the dog.
The appeal appeared in the Daily Echo and prompted more than 100 readers to voice their anger.
Elsworthy pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal, namely a dog, by throwing it against a wall, kicking it and hitting it when he appeared before Poole magistrates on Friday August 21.
The charge was brought under the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
Police said the dog did not suffer any lasting injuries.
Elsworthy also pleaded guilty to failing to surrender to custody at Poole magistrates’ court on August 9, 2019.
A spokesperson for the RSPCA said: “This was an upsetting and shocking attack and no animal should be treated this way.”
Sentencing: community order with a rehabilitation activity requirement and 80 hours of unpaid work. He was ordered to carry out a further 100 hours of unpaid work for failing to surrender to custody. Total of £170 costs and charges. Three-year ban on keeping animals (expires August 2023).
#TheList Lindsey Sim, born c. 1986, of Shearford Close, Barnstaple EX31 1AG – failed to care for three horses
Lindsey Sim, who was involved with shambolic horse welfare charity North Devon Equine Rescue alongside relative Ann Sim, has been banned from keeping horses for five years after vets found three of her animals had not been cared for properly.
Sim admitted charges relating to horses Kelly, Malibu and Blaze, following a prosecution by the RSPCA.
Vets found Kelly to be in an emaciated state as a result of insufficient nutrition and an untreated parasite infection.
Sim also admitted to failing to meet the needs of Blaze, a foal, and Malibu, a grey pony.
Sentencing: six rehabilitation days; total of £240 in fines, costs and charges. Banned from keeping horses for five years, but can appeal after three (expires August 2025).
#TheList Stuart P Whelan, born c. 1976, of Dalton Avenue, Raffles, Carlisle CA2 7DY – kicked a stranger’s Westie into the air
The unprovoked attack on the tiny dog was outlined to magistrates as they heard several disturbing accounts of how Whelan – who was out cycling with his own dog at the time – abused other dog walkers.
All regularly visit Chances Park, near Wigton Road, where Whelan cycles with his dog.
The defendant had pleaded not guilty to two allegations of using threatening behaviour and causing a dog unnecessary suffering. He declined to take take part in his trial because court officials refused to let him bring his dog into court. He was convicted of all three charges.
The first offence was on May 8, 2020, as local woman Maxine Denby walked her dog in the park. “I heard a dog squealing,” she said.
She described seeing Whelan lift his own dog into the air over his head, and then ‘slam’ it on to the ground.
“The dog was crying and in a lot of distress,” she said, adding: “I was in shock.”
Fellow dog walker Tony Peacock corroborated Miss Denby’s account, describing how after verbally abusing Miss Denby Whelan repeatedly cycled past her at speed, with his own dog sitting in his bike’s front basket.
Four days later, dog walker Patricia Guanlett was enjoying a tea-time walk through the park with her two dogs, including her West Highland terrier Cara.
As she walked across the grass, Mrs Guanlett saw Whelan cycling along a path towards her, his dog running along beside him.
Her dogs ran towards him, prompting him to throw down his bike and start screaming at her, falsely claiming one of her dogs had bitten his dog, she said. Mrs Guanlett said: “He said if ‘I see that [her] dog again, it’s dead.”
As she was putting one of her dogs on a lead Whelan ran at her West Highland terrier, which was simply ‘toddling along’ and ‘booted’ her, the force of the blow lifting the dog 18 inches into the air.
“I was terrified he’d hit me,” said Mrs Guanlett, who immediately grabbed Cara to keep her safe. Her dog was shaking, she said.
Of Whelan, she said: “His demeanour was horrific: so hyper and so aggressive. It was really, really scary.”
Since the attack, Cara had been wary of strangers. After she left the park, Whelan briefly followed her, she said.
Judith Keir was also walking her dog in the park. She had previously reported Whelan to the police for his behaviour.
Mrs Keir said Whelan’s dog was not bitten, adding: “Mr Whelan took what I thought looked like a penalty kick, literally running up to Cara and booting her in the ribs. It was deliberate.
“Cara was nowhere near the other dog.”
Whelan denied throwing his dog to the ground or being aggressive. He will be sentenced on September 27, 2020, after background reports have been prepared on him.
#TheList Steven Klein, born c. 1969, his partner Melanie Harding, born 20/01/1972, and their lodger Kelly Marie Oldham, born c. 1999, all of Rowan Avenue, Ribbleton, Preston PR2 6QE – charges relating to the physical and mental abuse of four dogs
Staffies Trinity, Harley, Quinn and Petrol were heard yelping by a neighbour as Steven Klein hit, kicked and threw things at them.
Preston Magistrates’ Court heard a witness’s flat overlooks a communal area where Klein, who owns Harley, his girlfriend Melanie Harding – owner of Trinity and Quinn – and their lodger Kelly Oldham, Petrol’s owner, keep their dogs.
The neighbour reported she had seen and filmed Klein losing his temper, shouting and swearing at the dogs and being physically abusive on an “almost daily basis” and reported it to Gateway Housing, which in turn reported it to the RSPCA.
RSPCA prosecutor Paul Ridehalgh said: “The case involves potentially painful and frightening handling and control methods employed by Stephen Klein which were known and observed by Melanie Harding and Kelly Oldham and they failed to protect their dogs from Stephen Klein.
“She has observed the dogs cry out after being hurt and they appear scared of Mr Klein. She has provided CCTV video of the communal area showing various incidents that have occurred and this video corroborates her written description of the incidents.”
Videos show Klein kicking a lighter coloured dog, who ran away lame in the right hind leg, holding another dog down and forcibly slapping her, and swiping at a dog with the broom, hitting his head.
Further video evidence shows Klein pick up a ball and throw it forcefully at a dog, into his side, as he tries to run past.
In May 2019 the dogs were seized and the three defendants interviewed.
In interview Klein claimed that he would use a stick to “control” the dogs and after being shown the video clips he claimed that he was “just playing” with the dogs.
He denied failing to ensure their needs were met by failing to protect them from suffering but was found guilty after a trial.
Sentencing: Klein: ordered to pay a total of £570 in fines, costs and charges. Banned from keeping animals for six years (expires August 2026). Harding and Oldham, who were described in court as ‘vulnerable’ were ordered to pay £300 costs. They were banned from keeping animals for four years (expires August 2024).
#TheList Brandon Woods, born c. 1994, previously of Merthyr Tydfil and now Swansea – set fire to a neighbour’s budgie using an aerosol at the age of 14.
This is a horrific case of (non animal) violence from August 2020 but it’s mentioned in the newspaper report that Woods’ first offence was in 2008 when he set fire to a neighbour’s budgie using an aerosol so that earns him an entry on #TheList.
I can’t find the original media but I would imagine he was never named as he was only around 14 at the time.
Woods now has been sentenced to 15 months in jail (half in custody and the remainder on licence) after attacking a young woman.
The woman was left with more than 60 bruises and scratches on her face and body after the “cowardly” assault.
Some of the wounds left by Woods were described as looking like “claw marks”.
Woods; offending began in 2008 when he was a young teenager and he set fire to a neighbour’s budgie.
A judge said at the time that Woods’ pattern of offending demonstrated a “worrying personality trait” and he said he had concerns the defendant would go on to become a “very dangerous man” unless he changed his ways.
Woods’ convictions include spitting at a police officer, battery, criminal damage, drink-driving, driving while disqualified, witness intimidation, drugs matters, and two for assault occasioning actual bodily harm – one of these had seen him attack his mother and then go on to squirt ketchup around the house.
#TheList Joseph Pocklington, born 16/10/1990, of Marshall Street, Darlington DL3 – ‘lost his temper’ and punched his pet dog in the face numerous times before dragging her by the neck
Joseph Pocklington was spotted by a woman in Crown Street, Darlington, who filmed the abuse on her phone before confronting him and taking the dog.
The witness then called the police who later found Pocklington asleep in a nearby church yard.
Alan Davies, prosecuting, said: “At around 4.20pm on Sunday, December 22, a witness was waiting to pick up her daughter on Crown Street in Darlington.
“She noticed the defendant sat on some steps with a black lurcher or greyhound type of dog on a short lead.
“She recorded him grabbing the dog by the neck, dragging it towards him and punching it to the face a number of times.
“The witness and her daughter challenged him and took the dog, he became upset by this and left. The witness then contacted the police who found him sleeping in a church yard.
“He was arrested and told police ‘yeah, I did give my dog a few slaps,’ he was then shown footage from the incident and became upset, saying he could not remember assaulting the dog and could only remember getting angry because the dog was trying to run into the traffic.”
Pocklington pleaded guilty to one count of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal.
Stephen Andrews, mitigating, said his client’s behaviour was out of character and he was very upset having watched the footage of the incident.
He said: “You have heard that when he was interviewed he became very upset and that’s because he was appalled by what he seen.
“You have a gentleman here who would describe himself as a dog lover. He has kept dogs for many years without any issues whatsoever, he looked after them and he protected them.
“How then does he end up before you for an offence of this type? He has over a period of time abused alcohol and has essentially become alcohol dependant.
“He has no recollection of the incident, but he tells me he can remember his feet becoming tangled with the dog lead and becoming angry.
“You have heard that police found him asleep in a public area a short time after, and that is because he was so intoxicated. He is incredibly remorseful.”
Sentencing: 12-month community order; total of £180 in costs and charges. Banned from keeping animals for two years (expires August 2022).