Category Archives: horses and ponies

West Wales: Sean Burns, Kenneth Evans and John Clayton

#TheList Sean Ronald Burns, born August 1970, of Rosehill Lodge, Ferry Lane, Pembroke SA71 4RG, Kenneth Darren Evans, born c. 1976, of Llys Caermedi, Carmarthen, and John A Clayton of 17 Rhos Las, Carmarthen SA31 2DY – convicted on charges relating to cruelty to animals at Bramble Hall Farm in Pembroke Dock and operation of an illegal slaughterhouse

Sean Burns (left) pictured outside court with his solicitor
Sean Burns (left) pictured outside court with his solicitor

Sean Burns was convicted of multiple cruelty charges in relation to 215 animals at Bramble Hall Farm, Ferry Lane, Pembroke Dock SA71 4RG.

The charges included the unlicensed breeding of dogs, welfare and animal-keeping regulation charges relating to sheep, horses, dogs, pigs, and goats.

A total of 53 pigs, 80 sheep, three goats, 58 dogs, 20 horses and one donkey were removed from the smallholding after being found living in squalor and without adequate space, food or water.

Sean Burns pictured outside court

District Judge Christopher James told Burns he had “deliberately” inflicted suffering over a “significant period of time”.

He told Burns the condition of the animals was “extremely poor”, and that some dogs and puppies had “died due to the neglect suffered at your hands”.

Atrocious conditions for the animals on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock

One horse was found with a pipe stuck in its hoof and two horses were found with no access to food or water.

They also found 10 newborn puppies in a plastic food bowl, two of which were dead.

Prosecutor Alexander Greenwood said the dogs were kept in a “hazardous environment”, with no bedding, and the floor wet with urine and faeces.

Atrocious conditions for the animals on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock

The court was told the animals displayed signs of “bullying behaviour” as food was so scarce and the bigger animals were keeping the smaller animals away from food.

The prosecution said this case of animal neglect was “one of the worst examples of its kind.”

The court heard Burns failed to provide documentation for any of the animals.

Defending, Aled Owen told the court Burns “has not got the skills to manage this farm efficiently”.

“Quite frankly, my client is illiterate,” he said.

The prosecution followed an investigation by public protection officers from Pembrokeshire Council, supported by Dyfed-Powys Police’s rural crime team.

Sean Burns is pictured alongside his mother Pamela Burns.
Sean Burns is pictured alongside his mother Pamela Burns. Although she initially faced similar charges to her son, the case against her was dropped because of her apparent ill health

Sean Burns’ mother Pamela Burns had faced 24 charges but the case against her ultimately did not proceed on the grounds that she is said to be suffering from dementia.

Sean Burns was also convicted alongside associates John Clayton and Kenneth Evans on a string of charges relating to food hygiene, operating an illegal slaughterhouse and being involved in the illegal slaughter of sheep to produce ‘smokies’ – a West African delicacy where meat is cooked using a blow torch.

The illegal slaughterhouse operated in one of the agricultural outbuildings, with Clayton and Evans caught in the act by horrified inspectors.

The unit had been set up as a makeshift slaughter hall with six slaughtered sheep at various stages of preparation and further penned sheep awaiting the same fate.

Conditions inside the illegal slaughterhouse being operated on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock, Wales

The court was told that conditions in the slaughter hall were insanitary and the floor awash with blood from the slaughtered animals as well as by-products from the slaughter process.

A herd of pigs was seen wandering among suspended sheep carcasses, feeding on the remains of the slaughtered animals.

Approximately six further carcasses of smoked sheep were found bagged in the boot of Evans’ car, ready for onward supply.

Evidence was gathered by officers and the carcasses were seized for condemnation.

A number of sheep were subsequently euthanized for humane reasons and restrictions were placed on the herd of pigs, preventing their movement off-site to address the potential disease risk and to protect the human food chain.

Conditions inside the illegal slaughterhouse being operated on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock, Wales

Clayton was convicted in 2002 for the same offence alongside David Jones of Moelfre Farm in Llanwnnen, John Beddows of Tregaron, Ceredigion, Trefor Williams of Llandysul, Ceredigion, Alun Evans and his brother Richard Evans both of Abernewrig, Lampeter, Malcolm Taylor of Oldbury, in the West Midlands, and Alun Lloyd of Llanfrynach, Pembrokeshire

Sentencing for these offences is to follow.

Magistrates in Court in Llanelli formalised that order for the removal of the animals owned by Pamela and Sean Burns of Bramble Hall.

Sentencing: Sean Burns was given 20 weeks in prison for illegal dog breeding, animal welfare charges and other summary matters. Although Pembrokeshire Council have incurred thousands of pounds in costs, Burns was only ordered to pay a £115 victim surcharge at this stage. He was handed an indefinite ban from keeping animals, including having any involvement or influence over the care or welfare of animals.

Milford Mercury
BBC News
Western Telegraph

Maidstone Kent: Jimmy Price, Samuel Powell and Danny Price

#TheList Maidstone gypsies and serial animal abusers Jimmy Price, born c. 1994, of Forstal Farm, Well Street, Loose ME15 0QE, Samuel ‘Johnny’ Powell, born c. 1985, of Wheat Gratten Stableyards, Forstal Road, Lenham ME17 2BF, Danny Price, born c. 1990, of Victoria Stables, Victoria Court, East Farleigh ME15 0BW

Serial abusers from Maidstone, Kent, UK Samuel Powell (left) and career criminal Jimmy Price were both jailed for animal cruelty.
Serial animal abusers Samuel Powell (left) and Jimmy Price were both jailed for their latest acts of cruelty.

Jimmy Price and Samuel Powell were sent to prison after the former was filmed repeatedly stabbing a deer and the latter had put an eight-month-old foal to work. Price was also found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to a horse and two dogs.

Qualified jockey Danny Price left a horse to starve to death but was let off with a community order and not banned from keeping animals.

Jimmy Price’s brother, Danny Price – a qualified jockey – admitted letting a horse starve to death and received a community order.

Jimmy Price's brother Danny was convicted after his bay horse was found dead next to a hay bale during the RSPCA raid in March 2019. He had starved to death
Jimmy Price’s brother Danny was convicted after his bay horse was found dead next to a hay bale during the RSPCA raid in March 2019. He had starved to death

A video played to the court showed Jimmy Price’s dogs, Scout and Tramp, untethered and unfed at the father-of-two’s home address in Forstal Farm, Loose.

Convicted animal abuser Jimmy Price from Maidstone, Kent, UK
Jimmy Price, who has previous convictions for violence and dishonesty, is a father of two

A voice in the video was heard to say: “If they run away good luck to them, I tell you what you’re the wickedest fella I’ve ever seen in my life.”

Jimmy Price, who has a history of violence, was previously convicted in December 2019 after repeatedly stabbing a deer. He was also caught hare coursing.

Still from the horrifying video in which Jimmy Price stabs a deer repeatedly while being goaded by three unknown accomplices

Rowan Morton, prosecuting for the RSPCA, said today: “It’s very difficult to even explain the gravity of what the video shows.

“There are a group of four males that can be seen with a deer. Jimmy Price is seen stabbing the deer multiple times in the throat while others shout at him to stab it.

“It’s very graphic and upsetting, there was no doubt that animal was caused significant pain and suffering.”

Convicted animal abuser Jimmy Price from Maidstone, Kent, UK, with partner Chanelle Treeby
Jimmy Price with partner Chanelle Treeby

Price, who was already serving a suspended sentence for theft offences, has previously been convicted of causing unnecessary suffering to dogs.

Persistent criminal Jimmy Price was found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to two dogs and a horse
Persistent criminal Jimmy Price was found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to two dogs and a horse

When Tramp and Scout were taken into the RSPCA’s care and fed properly, they gained 25% bodyweight and 45% bodyweight respectively within seven weeks.

Convicted animal abuser Jimmy Price from Maidstone, Kent, UK
Jimmy Price was previously convicted of hare coursing

Price’s dogs and the horse, which belonged to his late father, were seized during an RSPCA raid on Forstal Farm in March 2019.

Horse trader Samuel Powell had three horses seized during the same raid, having had a mare and her foal seized two months prior.

Convicted animal abuser Samuel Powell from Maidstone, Kent, UK
Samuel Powell

Four of the horses were found to be emaciated. One was suffering with diarrhoea and the foal had breathing problems, fleas and was described as “very thin”.

A Shetland Pony was found with a cut across the nose.

Powell accepted each of the horses was his own, but said they were in that condition as he was rehabilitating them.

He told the court: “I will buy horses that have not been treated properly. When I get them I feed them, look after them and rehabilitate them. Then I sell them for profit.

“I like to think I sometimes save lives when I buy horses.”

When asked where he buys his horses, Powell said: “I don’t want to go into too much detail as I’m from the gypsy community.”

In 2019 Powell was convicted of causing unnecessary suffering to a foal which was seen walking up and down at Appleby Horse Fair pulling a cart with people in.

On Friday 10/01/2020 Powell was found guilty of four counts of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal and a fifth charge of failing to ensure the welfare of an animal. The five charges relate to the five horses seized from Forstal Farm.

Danny Price admitted causing unnecessary suffering to a bay horse. In return charges of causing suffering to a bay mare, a black mare and a piebald mare, were dropped.

Convicted animal abuser and qualified jockey Danny Price from Maidstone
Horse killer Daniel Price

The bay horse was found dead next to a hay bale during the RSPCA raid in March 2019. He had starved to death.

Magistrates heard the 29-year-old had stopped looking after the horse as he was in the process of selling it, and thought it was the new owner’s responsibility.

Sentencing:
Jimmy Price – jailed for seven and a half months of which half will be spent in custody. Ordered to pay £5,115 in costs and charges. Five-year order banning him from keeping dogs.

Samuel Powell – jailed for 26 weeks and will serve half of that sentence. Ordered to pay total of £5,115. Banned from owning horses for five years but can appeal after just one year.

Danny Price – 12-month community order; 150 hours of unpaid work; ordered to pay £1,585.

Kent Online

Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales: Arron Dixon

#TheList Arron Lee Dixon, born 26/01/1992, of 17 Aberfan Fawr, Merthyr Tydfil CF48 4PE – neglected and beat his horses

Horse abuser Arron Lee Dixon from Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales.

Arron Lee Dixon was found guilty of a string of animal welfare offences relating to three ponies.

The father-of-one failed to provide a suitable diet and environment for the ponies, who were being kept at a site in Bryngoleu, and was even caught beating one of them.

Neglected horses owned by Arron Lee Dixon from Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales.

All three animals – a grey gelding Welsh, a male skewbald native and a small male skewbald native – were found by RSPCA officers to be underweight and had little or no land to graze on or supplementary feed.

Neglected horses owned by Arron Lee Dixon from Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales.

One skewbald pony was so underweight and in such poor condition that a vet said he had “suffered unnecessarily” while another pony had escaped from the field and was found grazing elsewhere.

On March 21, 2019, when RSPCA officers were carrying out a follow-up check on the welfare of the ponies, an officer also caught Dixon beating one of the animals.

Neglected horses owned by Arron Lee Dixon from Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales.

The ponies were taken into the care of the RSPCA and were made available for rehoming.

Dixon, who runs a house and rubbish clearance business called Dixon’s Removals, was convicted of five animal welfare offences dating to February and March 2019. He had pleaded not guilty at an earlier hearing but was found guilty in his absence.

Horse abuser Arron Lee Dixon from Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales.

An RSPCA spokesman said the charity had already given Dixon advice on horse care in February because the ponies had little or no land to graze. But when officers returned on March 21, Dixon hadn’t addressed the problem or provided supplementary feed and the ponies were underweight.

Flyer for Merthyr Tydfil horse abuser Arron Dixon's house clearance business
Violent horse abuser Arron Lee Dixon runs a house and rubbish clearance business

It was during this visit while waiting for a vet and the police to arrive, Dixon was caught beating the skewbald native pony.

Gemma Cooper, an RSPCA spokeswoman, said: “These ponies were grazed illegally on inappropriate land without supplementary feed, and therefore were not having their needs met and one was so underweight, vets found him to be suffering.

“We tried to work with Dixon previously but returned to the site to find improvements had not been made. One pony had even escaped the field and was subsequently found grazing elsewhere.

“Thankfully, we were able to rescue these ponies and offer them a second chance of happiness. All three have made an amazing transformation and are now available for rehoming.”

Dixon was found guilty of three charges relating to the weight of the animals, one charge for failing to provide a suitable diet and one charge for failing to meet the skewbald native pony’s needs to be protected from pain, suffering or injury by inappropriate handling and physical ill-treatment including hitting.

Sentencing: 18-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months; 20 rehabilitation days. 10-week curfew; £1,000 in court costs. Banned for five years from keeping animals.

WalesOnline

Upper Tumble, Llanelli, Carmarthenshire: Thomas King

#TheList Thomas Martin King, born 11/01/1970, of Waungoch, Upper Tumble, Llanelli SA14 6BX – left four ponies to suffer with overgrown and curling hooves

One of four ponies found with painfully overgrown hooves
One of four ponies found with painfully overgrown hooves

Thomas Martin King pleaded guilty to two offences under the Animal Welfare Act in that he caused unnecessary suffering to a piebald female Shetland pony by failing to explore and address overgrown hooves resulting in her lameness and that he also did not ensure that three other ponies were protected from pain, injury, suffering and disease as shown by their overgrown hooves.

Following the case, RSPCA inspector, Nic De Celis said when he saw the ponies at Beudy Bach in Upper Tumble at the end of July 2019, he found their hooves were “extremely overgrown and curling.”

He said: “As I approached the group of ponies they began to move away, three of them were nodding and moving abnormally and then began high stepping as they picked up speed.

“However the fourth pony, a piebald, appeared to be in some distress and was unable to walk properly and could not keep up with the others. The pony’s front hooves had overgrown forward, were curled up and back on themselves and were rubbing the front of the pony’s front legs when she walked, causing them to bleed.”

The owner – King – was in attendance and had requested for a vet and farrier to be present who arrived at the location, with King keen for the ponies to be treated straight away.

“Once the ponies’ feet had all been trimmed and filed I advised the owner that he must ensure any follow-up treatment advised by his vet is administered and if there are issues he should contact his vet immediately,” said inspector De Celis.

Two days later inspector De Celis attended the location with a vet. One of the ponies appeared sore when walking and the owner was advised to liaise with his vet to provide some form of ongoing pain relief.

In mitigation, the court heard that the horses have been well treated since intervention and King had been remorseful.

Inspector De Celis added: “It is just so important to ensure that hooves are cared for – a simple phone call to a farrier much earlier could have stopped these ponies from any pain or discomfort.”

Sentencing: 12-week prison sentence suspended for 12 months. Ordered to pay £400 costs and a victim surcharge of £122.

South Wales Guardian

South Shields, Tyne and Wear: Natasha and Cameron Bell

#TheList Natasha ‘Tasha’ Bell, born c. 1982, of Bonsall Court, South Shields NE34 0HT, and son Cameron Bell, born c. 2001, of Bamford Walk, South Shields NE34 0JA – for the neglect of two horses, one of which had to be euthanised

Horse abusers Natasha Bell and son Cameron Bell from South Shields, Tyne and Wear, UK
Natasha Bell and son Cameron Bell caused unnecessary suffering to two horses including this one

Mother and son Natasha and Cameron Bell admitted causing unnecessary suffering to horses Porky and Chalky and failing to meet their needs.

The animals were discovered tethered to trees in Boldon Colliery in January 2019.

Horse abusers Natasha Bell and son Cameron Bell from South Shields, Tyne and Wear, UK, pictured outside court
Horse abusers Cameron and Natasha Bell pictured outside court

Porky had collapsed and had to be put down because he was unable to recover.

Both ponies had a poor body condition and were found to have heavy worm burdens. It was said they could have been suffering for at least six months.

Horse abuser Cameron Bell from South Shields, Tyne and Wear, UK

RSPCA prosecutor Stewart Haywood told the court how the ponies had been inappropriately tethered, were not kept in a suitable environment and had “inadequate dietary provision”.

He said an RSPCA inspector arrived at some open public land in South Tyneside on January 24, 2019, after a report of a collapsed pony.

“This pony turned out to be Porky,” said Mr Haywood. “The inspector made attempts to stand it up. It was in a poor condition and tethered inappropriately to a tree that was on a slope.

“A vet came and further attempts were made for Porky to stand. However the only course was euthanasia.

“The police also attended and euthanasia was carried out.”

The prosecutor told the court that Chalky was found in the same area, also tethered and underweight.

Horse abuser Cameron Bell from South Shields, Tyne and Wear, UK

Further examination revealed that Porky was thin and had a worm infestation, and the animal had “lack of muscle and body strength”.

Meanwhile, Chalky’s tether had been too tight and the animal also had a high worm burden.

Mr Haywood added: “The ponies were suffering for several reasons. They had inadequate provision of water and a poor body condition.

“The environment was hazardous and there was a risk of injury. The tight tether of Chalky would have caused discomfort.

“This is a case of horses that were clearly suffering significantly.”

Solicitor Valerie Bell, representing both defendants, said the horses were owned by Cameron and his mum played a smaller role in their care.

She said Natasha Bell had suffered significant mental health problems for many years and was receiving medication. A psychiatric report explaining her background was prepared for the court.

It was said Natasha’s “mental health had deteriorated during the commission of these offences”.

Their lawyer added: “Both are genuinely remorseful and very distressed about the whole background that has led to this.”

Sentencing:
Natasha Bell – 12-month community order with rehabilitation activities, £60 fine plus costs.
Cameron Bell – 12-week prison sentence suspended for a year; 80 hours of unpaid work plus rehabilitation activity requirement; ordered to pay costs.
Both were banned from keeping horses for 10 years.

ChronicleLive

Hailsham, East Sussex: Leonard Jones

#TheList horse trader Leonard Jones, born c. 1966, of 41 Butts Field, Hailsham BN27 2BZ – for the severe neglect of a piebald mare.

Leonard Jones is now banned from keeping animals for five years following his conviction for horse neglect.
Leonard Jones, who is from a notorious family of travellers, is now banned from keeping animals for five years following his conviction for horse neglect.

Leonard Jones was found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to a horse by failing to provide adequate or any parasitic control.

The offence took place at Hailsham between February 26 and December 28, 2018.

He was also found guilty of a further charge of causing unnecessary suffering to the piebald mare by failing to investigate and address the animal’s poor body condition and health.

Sentencing: 24 weeks in prison, suspended for two years. Six-month curfew. Ordered to pay £1,250 in costs. Banned from keeping or owning any animal for five years.

Eastbourne Herald

Stanton Drew, North East Somerset: Wendy Hylton

#TheList Wendy Hylton, born c 1948, of Stanton Drew, Somerset BS39 – failed to provide hoof care for two ponies

Wendy Hylton from Stanton Drew, Somerset, failed to provide hoof care to Shetland ponies Tonto and Midnight

Hylton pleaded guilty to two offences, following a prosecution by the RSPCA.

Concerns about two Shetland ponies, known as Tonto and Midnight, had been raised with the RSPCA after one of the two ponies appeared to be unable to walk.

Officers from the animal welfare charity were joined by a vet on May 25, 2019, who carried out a clinical examination of Tonto and found he was in a significant amount of pain, and unable to walk as a result of his severely overgrown hooves and laminitis.

Wendy Hylton from Stanton Drew, Somerset, failed to provide hoof care to Shetland ponies Tonto and Midnight

Midnight was also found to have overgrown hooves and both horses were seized by police and taken into the care of a specialist equine charity where they received the care and treatment they needed.

RSPCA inspector Miranda Albinson said: “Providing regular and routine farriery (shoeing of horse care) is a vital part of owning equines.

“Cases like this are very sad as they could so easily be avoided with the correct care.”

The offences took place between March 24 and May 24, 2019, in the vicinity of Radford Hill, Timsbury.

These acts were contrary to S.4(1) of the Animal Welfare Act 2006 and S.9(1) of the Animal Welfare Act 2006.

Sentencing: four-month curfew; ordered to pay £385 costs and charges. Lifetime ban on keeping animals.

SomersetLive

St Wenn, Bodmin: Amanda Thorne

#TheList Amanda Jane Thorne, born c. 1978, of Little Skewes Farm, St Wenn, Bodmin PL30 5PS, neglected and starved 25 horses

Amanda Thorne starved and neglected 25 horses in one of worst cruelty cases the RSPCA has seen.
Amanda Thorne starved and neglected 25 horses in one of worst cruelty cases the RSPCA has seen.

Mother-of-two Amanda Thorne had denied five charges of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal and one of ensuring that the needs of 25 horses were met.

But she was found guilty by the judge after a trial in her absence in October 2019.

Amanda Thorne starved and neglected 25 horses in one of worst cruelty cases the RSPCA has seen.

All 25 horses suffered because they did not have clean accommodation, adequate food, a constant supply of fresh, clean drinking water, a dry lying area, adequate exercise or parasitic control.

Eight horses had overgrown hooves and four were malnourished because of Thorne’s neglect.

One was in need of veterinary care for a foot abscess, rain scald, lymphangitis, cellulitis and wounds.

Amanda Thorne starved and neglected 25 horses in one of worst cruelty cases the RSPCA has seen.

One horse tragically died. The rest were taken by the RSPCA and stabled before being found permanent owners. They have made good recoveries.

Nigel Weller, for Thorne, said: “I would implore the court that she has learnt her lesson going through court proceedings.”

He added that the risk of her reoffending was low.

Amanda Thorne starved and neglected 25 horses in one of worst cruelty cases the RSPCA has seen.

District Judge Diana Baker said: “Horses were starving to death, there were not being treated for their ailments. Their hooves were not being trimmed. They were in a pitiful state.

“You have shown no remorse for what happened and you blamed others. Concerned members of the public brought this matter to the attention of the RSPCA.

“One of the experts said that this could have been a whole lot worse if they had not brought the matter to their attention.”

She added that she had been considering sending farmworker Thorne straight to jail, but decided to suspend her six-month term for 12 months.

The court also heard that Thorne has problems with her mental health, which were exacerbated by the court case.

Amanda Thorne starved and neglected 25 horses in one of worst cruelty cases the RSPCA has seen.

Speaking after sentencing RSPCA inspector Jo Pearson said the case was one of the cruellest she had ever seen. She thanked neighbours for alerting the charity to the horses’ plight and added: ” Without members of the public coming to us with the information, she would never have been brought before the courts”.

Sentencing: six-month prison sentence, suspended for 12 months; 15-day Rehabilitation Activity Requirement; four-month tagging order; ordered to pay £15,000 towards the RSPCA’s costs. Banned from keeping equines for life.

CornwallLive

Glenrothes, Fife: Heather Jones

#TheList Heather Jones, born 28/05/1970, of 42 King Edward Street, Glenrothes KY7 6AW – left three horses to starve in a field

Heather Jones of Glenrothes, Fife, left horses to starve in a field
Heather Jones of Glenrothes, Fife, left horses to starve in a field

A horse named Zante was in an emaciated state after Heather Jones failed to provide enough food for him. He and two other horses kept by Jones in a field in Coaltown of Balgonie, were handed over to the Scottish SPCA. The animals have since been rehomed.

Jones was said to have been a keen horsewoman, having kept horses for years and competed in shows around the country.

At Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court she was reprimanded by Sheriff Grant McCulloch for failing to care properly for Zante.

Sheriff McCulloch also expressed concern for three dogs she keeps and requested further information from the animal charity which investigated the case before he decides how to deal with her.

Heather Jones of Glenrothes, Fife, left horses to starve in a field

Jones admitted causing Zante unnecessary suffering between December 10, 2018, and January 10, 2019, by failing to provide adequate nutrition leading to him becoming emaciated.

Her denial of causing unnecessary suffering to two other horses, Toruk and Smith, was accepted by the Crown.

Sheriff McCulloch told Jones: “It’s clear that for whatever reason for a period you did not properly care for one of your horses.

“You did, through inaction or improper action, cause Zante to suffer unnecessarily.”

He said that fortunately Zante’s body condition had improved since being taken from Jones’ care and he was now thriving.

Solicitor Alistair Burleigh said Jones had suffered from mental health issues and had been “completely and utterly isolated” when the offence occurred.

He said: “She knows her failures were quite serious. She is deeply ashamed of how this came about.”

Mr Burleigh said Jones had been highly dedicated to her horses, taking them to events all over. He said: “All that has gone by the wayside.

“She took the appropriate steps to sign these horses over to the SSPCA and all three of them have been rehomed.

“It’s obvious she has a huge void in her life as a result of not having any horses.”

Sentencing: 12-week structured deferred sentence to allow Jones to engage with psychiatry services and for a further report from the Scottish SPCA.

The Courier

Kettering, Northamptonshire: Reece Reed

#TheList Reece Reed (aka Reece Howard-Reed), born c. 2000, most recently of Club Street, Kettering NN16 8RP – mutilated a prize-winning miniature horse by stabbing him 20 times; ripped the wings off three chickens

Farmyard prowler and animal abuser Reece Reed previously of Kettering, Northamptonshire
Farmyard prowler and animal abuser Reece Reed was caught naked from the waist down in a chicken coop

Reed, who has previous convictions for burglary and vehicle theft, attacked the animals in April 2018 after breaking into a Wellingborough farm. The farm owner was alerted by a burglar alarm at 07:30 a.m.

Farmyard prowler and animal abuser Reece Reed previously of Kettering, Northamptonshire

Prosecutor Priya Bakshi told the court: “He ran to the summer house to investigate. There he found a shovel, and saw one window had been pried open and another had been smashed.

“He peered through the window. There, he saw a man with a six-inch kitchen knife inside the chicken coop.”

The farmer scared off the armed man – Reed, who was naked from the waist down – before searching his stables to see if any animals had been hurt.

Victim Sol suffered appalling knife injuries during a sadistic attack by Reece Reed
Victim Sol suffered appalling knife injuries during a sadistic attack by Reece Reed

It was then that he found his daughter’s prize-winning miniature show horse Sol. His back legs and rear had been stabbed 20 times and he was bleeding heavily.

Additionally, Reed had cut the wings off of three chickens. They had to be put down.

In court, the judge heard how Sol was a prize winner worth over £3,000 and was on track to becoming a champion show horse.
But following the attack, Sol was rendered unfit to compete ever again.

Victim Sol suffered appalling knife injuries during a sadistic attack by Reece Reed

In a victim impact statement read out in court, Sol’s owner said: After I learned that Sol had been hurt I was devastated and heartbroken.

“Sol was and is my best friend and he will always be part of the family.”

Reed later pleaded guilty to the offence.

His defence barrister, Osmun Munir, said the 19-year-old was “remorseful and expresses sympathy for the family”.

But in sentencing, Judge Fowler was unable to jail Reed for more than two months over the mutilations – because the attacks were charged as “criminal damage” rather than, for example, animal cruelty.

He told Reed: “This episode can only be described as wholly despicable. The charges that you face today do not reflect the wickedness of your behaviour.

“This has been treated as if it were criminal damage against two inanimate objects. It isn’t. And it is in my view and error that ought to be corrected.”

Reed was already serving a sentence of three years and seven months at Peterborough HMP imposed in March 2019 for previous crimes.

Sentencing: two months in jail for mutilating the animals and six months for carrying the knife.

Northamptonshire Chronicle