Clifton, Nottingham: Amelia Mercer

#TheList Amelia Mercer, born 07/05/1988, of Conifer Crescent, Clifton, Nottingham NG11 – banned from keeping equines for life after death of three horses she bought from a traveller

Amelia Mercer from Clifton, Nottingham, UK, and the three ponies who sadly died while under her care
Amelia Mercer and the three ponies who died while under her care

Mercer pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to two horses between February 1 and 7; and one charge of failing to ensure proper diet or environment, protection from pain or disease.

The RSPCA seized the animals and found them so sick that a vet recommended they should be put down, a court heard.

One died before it could be euthanised and the other two were destroyed, after being taken from her land in Gotham in February.

Rory Macmillan, mitigating, told the court that his client was visited on February 1, 2019, by a man with some horses in a vehicle.

“A person who appeared to be a traveller said they had a small grey. She agreed to pay £200.

“She saw it from the front end and it looked all right. They said they had two other horses she could have free. She gave them £100, only seeing their heads and necks in a van.

“From the moment she saw them, particularly the two additional ones, she saw they were in a very bad state, very thin.

“They looked as if they were starving. Their bones were jutting out and if she had seen them, she would not have taken them on.

“The traveller very quickly left,” said Mr Macmillan.

The horses had no names. She gave them drink and a little food, realising that overfeeding might make them ill.

Mr Macmillan said that Mercer had severe health problems and added: “She has always been interested in horses and has always tried to help them. She is not a bad person.”

Richard Purchase, for the RSPCA, said that Mercer had been warned previously about the condition of other horses she had kept.

When inspector Sarah Gardiner called, she felt that the horses were suffering and were being kept in poor conditions.

A vet visited and recommended that all three horses should be put down. One died from salmonella poisoning before this could happen.

“They were not given a proper suitable diet and were not in a suitable environment. There was no protection from the weather.

“Mercer was interviewed and said she bought them a week before from a traveller and that they were already in this terrible state,” said Mr Purchase.

He said that Mercer had no previous convictions and has other pets which do not create concerns.

“Clearly she is unsuitable to own horses,” added Mr Purchase.

Sentencing: ordered to pay £230 for fines and charges and £600 towards the RSPCA’s. Lifelong ban on keeping horses or ponies.


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