Tag Archives: Renfrewshire

Ferguslie Park, Paisley: Owen Gillespie

#TheList Owen Anthony Gillespie, born 09/02/1979, of 17 Westwood Gardens, Paisley PA3 1NA – left a desperately ill dog in agony and locked in a cage

Convicted dog abuser Owen Gillespie from Paisley, Renfrewshire

Gillespie failed to take his pet Staffy, Stella, to the vet to treat a chronic ear condition and an injured foot.

The nine-year-old dog was also suffering from a severe oesophageal condition which left her vomiting violently and in pain.

This resulted in her having to be euthanised by the Scottish SPCA as her condition was too severe to be treated.

The SSPCA attended at Gillespie’s home on April 25, 2019, after they received a call to say a dog could be heard screaming in pain at the property.

When they arrived around 10.45am they found the bull terrier vomiting in a cage in the living room and Gillespie told the officers she had been sick for a few days.

The court heard that Gillespie had not taken the dog to the vet as he couldn’t afford it.

Procurator fiscal depute Laura Wilcox said: “The SSPCA officer explained to Gillespie the reason for her visit and asked if she could view the dog.

“He agreed and invited her into the property where she saw the dog in a cage in the living room.

Staffy Stella, who was neglected by her owner to the extent that she had to be put to sleep

“The dog was in a good bodily condition and seemed bright but she was concerned because the flooring of the cage was covered in watery vomit and the dog was retching as if it was going to be sick.

“He informed the officer that she had eaten the outer covering of a tennis ball a few days prior.

“He let her out of the cage and the officer saw that the dog was lame on her right leg.”

Gillespie was told that the dog would have to receive treatment and that he would qualify for financial help from PDSA as he was unemployed.

It was once the dog was treated by the animal charity’s vet that the full extent of her condition was discovered.

Ms Wilcox added: “Her right front foot was inflamed and there was a nail that was loose. Both ear canals were inflamed, thickened, narrowed and were infected by bacteria and yeast. There was a smell coming from both ears.

“Her abdomen was tense and uncomfortable and it was found that her stomach wall was thickened and that her oesophagus was inflamed and flaccid.

“This meant it was ineffective at propelling food to her stomach.

“Her condition continued to worsen and she continued to vomit and at this point it was decided the best course of action was to euthanise her.”

The court heard the vet had concluded that if Gillespie had sought vet treatment for his dog within an appropriate time, he would have lessened the suffering.

However, prosecutors could not say whether the dog would have survived due to the severity of the stomach condition.

Staffy Stella, who was neglected by her owner to the extent that she had to be put to sleep

Gillespie pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to his dog between February and April 2019 by failing to seek adequate care to treat an injured foot, persistent vomiting and an ear condition.

His lawyer, Amy Spencer said: “He has already paid a penalty in regards to this as he has lost his much-loved dog.

“This is a heartbreaking case for him. He is still completely traumatised.

“He is embarrassed by his actions and he knows he ought to have sought treatment for Stella. He has worked his whole adult life and recently lost his job.

“He really was hoping she would have made a recovery.”

Sentencing: ordered to pay a £500 fine. Banned from keeping dogs for just one year.

Daily Record

Paisley, Renfrewshire: Ross Elliot

#TheList Ross Elliot, born 18/03/1983, previously of Mountainblue Street, Barrowfield, Glasgow G31 but has moved to Paisley – starved two cats and a dog to death

Serial animal abuser Ross Elliot previously of Barrowfield in Glasgow, now Paisley, Renfrewshire

Serial pet abuser Ross Elliot admitted causing unnecessary suffering to two cats he left to starve to death in his abandoned flat.

Elliot was previously convicted of cruelty after turning up to a vet with the corpse of an emaciated dog. For that offence he was fined £200 and given 12-month pet ban.

Body of cat starved to death by Ross Elliot

Horrified Scottish SPCA inspectors found the bodies of the cats, known as Cheeky and Chilli, curled up in a soiled litter tray and lying beside an empty food bowl.

Body of cat starved to death by Ross Elliot

Inspector Stacey Erwin said: “The cats’ bodies were emaciated and infested with fleas and maggots. Both weighed around 1.4kg — less than half the minimum you’d expect a healthy cat to weigh.

“Our vet concluded the cats likely died a slow and unpleasant death due to a mixture of dehydration and starvation.

“When we informed Elliot of what had happened, he app­eared completely disinterested and unaffected by the news.”

She added: “Three animals have died in Ross Elliot’s care through circumstances which would have been completely avoidable if he’d met their most basic needs of food and water.

“We believe he should have been given a lifetime ban as a minimum. It’s clear he is not fit to own or care for animals and the previous short-term ban did not act as a deterrent.”

Scottish SPCA teams monitored Elliot’s flat for days and noted no-one was attending to the female cats — despite the owner saying a pal was caring for them.

Officers posted food through the letterbox but when they gained entry they found Cheeky and Chilli couldn’t reach it as they had been locked away.

Empty food boxes, full bin bags and piles of unopened mail were also discovered inside.

They said the only water on offer was from an “extremely dirty, stagnant” mop bucket.

The Sun

Additional info
We are advised that Ross Elliot is living in Russell Street, Paisley PA3 2LP.

Paisley, Renfrewshire: Danielle Brown

#TheList Danielle Elizabeth Brown (also known as Danielle Davidson), born 08/04/1986, of 32 Dunlop Street, Linwood, Paisley PA3 3AL – starved pet dogs Shasta and Skylar and refused to take them to the vet.

Cruel single mother Danielle Brown from Linwood, Paisley, left these two dogs to starve and refused to take them to the vet.

Brown’s cruelty left seven-year-old Shasta in such a “terrible state” that a concerned vet felt there was no option but to put the animal to sleep.

The dogs were taken to the vet by investigators from the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SSPCA) following an anonymous tip-off that they were being neglected.

Investigators arrived at Brown’s home and took the animals away to have them examined.

Cruel dog abuser Danielle Brown from Linwood, Paisley

Shasta’s ribs, hips and spine could clearly be seen through his coat. He also had a fever and tests revealed he had become blind in one eye due to glaucoma.

Vets who examined two-year-old Skylar could also clearly see her ribs, hips and spine.

Single mother Brown pleaded guilty to neglecting both pets between February 27 and March 27, 2017, in breach of the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006.

Community Payback Order of 75 hours of unpaid work over the next three months. Banned from owning animals for just 5 years (expires November 2022). Deprivation order on the surviving dog, Skylar. 

Paisley Gazette

Paisley, Renfrewshire: Thomas McLaughlin

#TheList Thomas McLaughlin, born ca. 1963, of West Campbell Street, Paisley, Renfrewshire PA2 – left a poorly 7yo Golden Retriever named Prince to suffer with multiple ailments including arthritis and a skin condition

Animal cruelty: Thomas McLaughlin was convicted of causing his dog unnecessary suffering

McLaughlin pleaded guilty to charges of causing golden retriever Prince unnecessary suffering by omitting to take the dog to the vet between October 2016 and January 2017 for treatment.

Cruel Thomas McLaughlin deliberately ignored the plight of Prince, even though the 7yo dog had lost most of his coat, was covered in sores, his paws were badly swollen, and he was constantly scratching patches of its hairless skin.

Fiscal depute Margaret McCallum told the court that an SSPCA inspector had attended McLaughlin’s property after an anonymous complaint about a neglected dog not receiving veterinary attention in respect of its ailments.

She said: “When admitted to the property, the inspector went into the living room where there was a golden retriever dog, normally called Prince, and he could clearly see it had a severe skin condition.

“His entire body was inflamed and red in colour. He was sparsely covered in hair. He had small spots and sores over his body.”

The court was told the room smelt “musky” and the animal could “barely stand” on his swollen paws. He limped slowly along and struggled to move his hind legs and fore legs. Prince also scratched incessantly at his skin.

A veterinary examination showed the dog weighed around 29 kilos and had body condition scale of 1.5/5, where a scale of one is emaciated and five is obese.

McLaughlin admitted he hadn’t been to the vets for two-and-a-half years and the dog did not have any medication.

The inspector summoned another SSPCA officer to help him deal with Prince’s rescue in January 2017. Sadly he had to be euthanised due to the extent of his ailments which included osteoarthritis and dysplasia.

Sheriff James Spy told the accused he had caused “considerable distress” to the animal requiring the dog to be put down.

Fined £1,000. Banned from keeping dogs for 10 years (expires August 2027).

Daily Record

Paisley, Renfrewshire: Alexander David Arrol

#TheList: Alexander David Arrol, born  23/06/1986, of Waverley Road, Paisley, Renfrewshire – threw a Jack Russell terrier named Max from the window of a second-floor flat, causing him to have a leg amputated

Twisted Alexander Arrol and his victim Max as a puppy
Twisted thug Alexander Arrol and his victim Max as a puppy

The court heard that Arrol had been asked to leave a party a short time before launching his callous attack on the helpless dog. Max was taken for treatment to a local vet where he was found to have head trauma and wasn’t able to support weight on his right hind leg. The leg later had to be amputated.

Arrol pleaded guilty to causing the dog unnecessary suffering, in breach of the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006, by throwing him through the window to his severe injury on February 27, 2017.

He also admitted a charge of culpably and recklessly breaking the window and throwing a television set and other unspecified items onto the street below.

Arrol’s lawyer told the court that his client – a career criminal with 55 previous convictions  – suffered from anxiety and depression.

Sentence: Arrol was jailed for 10 months for the offences, reduced from a year as he admitted his guilt.

The Gazette 28/05/2017

Paisley, Renfrewshire: Steven Ferguson

#TheList Steven Edward Ferguson, born 28/04/1985, of 18 Thrushcraig Crescent, Paisley PA2 6PR – left puppy to suffer with (unexplained) broken legs for nine months; the puppy, named Keira, was sadly put to sleep

Dog killer Steven Ferguson of Barochan Crescent, Paisley and his victim Keira
Dog killer Steven Ferguson of Barochan Crescent, Paisley and his victim Keira

Ferguson pleaded guilty to mistreating one-year-old Staffy border collie cross Keira between January and September 2012.
Ferguson took the pup to see a PDSA vet, who confirmed she had a broken femur. But he never took the dog for any further medical treatment and when she was examined nine months later she was found to have a number of other hind leg fractures.

The dog was then taken to a vet to be examined and was deemed to be in such a poor state of health she had to be put to sleep.
Paisley Sheriff Court heard Keira had escaped from Ferguson’s clutches and was found wandering the streets on September 16, 2012.

The Scottish Society for the Protection of Cruelty to Animals (SSPCA) were called after Keira was spotted struggling to walk and an SSPCA Inspector went to investigate.

Procurator fiscal depute Joanne Gilmour, prosecuting, explained: ““The dog was in obvious distress and pain. It was taken to a vet to be examined and x-rays were carried out.

“It was noted the dog had fractures in both hind legs.

“This would have caused severe pain and for some weeks after they had been sustained.

“In the vet’s opinion the dog had suffered unnecessarily through a lack of proper veterinary attention on more than one occasion.

“Due to the extent of the injuries the dog had to be euthanised.”

As Keira had run away from Ferguson’s home the authorities did not know he was her owner and it was a further month, following a campaign to track him down, that he was detained over the incident.
He admitted “failing to provide adequate treatment for multiple fractures to the rear legs of said dog” at an earlier court hearing.

Ferguson could have been jailed for up to a year for neglecting Keira so badly but Sheriff Susan Sinclair opted to spare him a spell behind bars and he left the building as a free man.

Sentence: 12-month Community Payback Order; 200 hours’ unpaid work; banned from keeping animals for 5 years

The Gazette 21/04/2016

Birmingham (now Paisley, Scotland): Angela Guthrie

#TheList hoarder Angela Guthrie, born 01/03/1962, originally from Birmingham but as of July 2018 living at 124 Ferguslie, Paisley PA1 2XP – neglected 69 cats she kept in her small council house.

Cat hoarder Angela Guthrie now of Skye Crescent, Paisley
Cat hoarder Angela Guthrie now of Skye Crescent, Paisley

Angela Guthrie herded the male and female cats into her mid-terraced home, coming to own them gradually over the years.

Now she has been banned from keeping more than one of the animals after she failed to take proper care of them, only providing two litter trays for them to relieve themselves in.

The task of caring for the 69 cats became too much for Guthrie and her home became filthy, with the three bedrooms and living room being covered in faeces, urine and rubbish.

Guthrie was due to go on trial over her neglect of the pets, which were of various ages and colours, also charged with failing “to provide adequate water and nutrition for the cats.”

But she struck a deal with prosecutors which saw those claims deleted from the charge against her in exchange for her guilty plea.

Sentence:  £320 fine; banned from owning or keeping more than one cat for four years (expired October 2019).

Birmingham Live 12/10/2015

Hamilton, South Lanarkshire: Anthony Allan

#TheList Anthony Peter Allan, born 08/03/1993, originally from Paisley, most recently of Kelvin Gardens, Hamilton ML3 9NR but as of February 2020 in prison for murder – punched and kicked his girlfriend’s puppy on repeated occasions

Allan carried out the attacks on the Staffordshire bull terrier pup when he was sharing a flat in Mossvale, Paisley with partner Lauren McMaster.

Depute fiscal Lauren McGonigal told the court: “The dog belonged to Lauren McMaster. It was a young pup.

“Miss McMaster described that, as the arguments between her and the accused worsened, he was taking his anger out on the dog.

“He would repeatedly kick and punch the dog.

“A neighbour who lived through the wall would hear the accused shouting at the dog, and hear sounds of the dog being chased around the property.

“Between January and the end of April she could hear the dog being hit and the dog yelping in pain.”

The depute fiscal added the attacks usually lasted for 15 minutes and happened when Allan’s partner left the flat.

The court heard how he was arrested after the police were called on April 27, 2014, when he behaved in a threatening and abusive way towards McMaster by shouting and swearing at her and threatening to kill himself.

When interviewed by cops he admitted he had been hitting the dog.

Allan pleaded guilty to repeatedly punching and kicking the dog and causing it unnecessary suffering and undue distress.

He also admitted a second charge of behaving in a threatening or abusive manner likely to cause fear and alarm by shouting, swearing and uttering threats.

When he returned to court to learn his fate, solicitor advocate Chris McKenna said that he had come from a troubled background in which his parents had failed to accept that their son had mental health problems.

As a result, his client described that time as being “a life of torture.”

Sentencing him, Sheriff Colin Pettigrew told Allan: “This utterly defenceless dog was the butt of your anger and suffered misery over a three-month period.”

Sheriff Pettigrew said that due to the serious nature of the offence, he could easily have jailed Allan, but had decided against that and gave him a community sentence instead. 

He said: “You accept you repeatedly punched and kicked the dog causing it undue distress.

“Repeatedly – over a period of three months – undoubtedly the dog’s life was a misery.

“It was the butt of your anger, your temper, and was utterly defenceless in terms of your repeated assaults on it.

“I have no doubt that you should be disqualified from keeping or owning a dog indefinitely.”

Allan agreed to accept drug counselling after it was revealed he had a problem with cannabis.

Sentence: two-year community payback order with 270 hours of unpaid work in a 12-month period;.banned from owning or keeping a dog for life.

Daily Record

In February 2020 Anthony Allan was jailed for a minimum of 18 years after beating a man to death with a baseball bat.

Erskine, Renfrewshire: Steven Riddell

#TheList Steven Riddell, born 22/09/1971, of 38 Park Green, Erskine PA8 7HJ – kept mice, rats and rabbits in appalling conditions to feed to his pet snakes

Steven Riddell
Steven Riddell

Animal cruelty inspectors found 130 creatures, including mice, rats and rabbits, kept in filthy conditions by father-of-four Steven Riddell.

Riddell used his greenhouse to breed the rodents as “live” food for the 50 snakes which filled a room of his home.

A seasoned SSPCA inspector was sickened by what they found at Riddell’s mid-terraced house in Erskine, following a tip-off in April 2014.

It was stifling inside as a tarpaulin had been used to cover the virtual tomb in which the mice and rats were found, providing little ventilation or natural light to enter. Many were dead, dying, dehydrated, starving and stuck in their own faeces.

One of the inspectors could only remain inside for a brief moment as she had difficulty breathing.

One cage, which weighed 2kg (4lb) when clean and empty, was caked with a solid mass of droppings mixed with bedding that weighed almost 14kg (31lb).

Steven Riddell

Callous Riddell freely admitted he had seen the rodents as a cheap source of food for his prized snakes which, by comparison, appeared to be well cared for.

It was, said one of the investigators, “a night and day” situation.

Inside the greenhouse, rats and mice, some with young which were lying on top of faeces, and one half-entrapped in compacted droppings, were kept in squalor in cages stacked from floor to ceiling.

Two mice were alive but paralysed, while others were dead or dying.

In some of the cages, faeces and urine were found to be six to eight inches in depth.

The only traces of drinking water found was coated in green algae.

Some of the rats and mice were found to have bite and scratch marks and others had parts of their tails missing.

Many had respiratory problems and some were poking their noses out of gaps as they desperately tried to get a gasp of fresh air.

Rabbits, which were kept in similarly disgusting conditions in a nearby hutch, had been family pets.

They too, were found to be neglected and their coats were stained yellow from urine.

Riddell pleaded guilty to two contraventions of the Animal Health & Welfare (Scotland) Act of causing unnecessary suffering by failing to provide adequate care, nutrition, water and clean bedding

When quizzed by officers, unemployed Riddell accepted the conditions were disgusting and unacceptable but maintained he had “taken his eye off the ball” due to a series of family problems.

He said he knew that some of them were in poor health but hadn’t sought veterinary attention as they were “only food for my reptiles”.

A senior SSPCA inspector later said that in all of her many years of service, she had never seen animals being kept in such atrocious conditions.

She said she had felt disgusted to think that Riddell “saw them as nothing more than a cheap food source for his reptiles”, which appeared to be well cared for inside his house.

It was stated that Riddell had agreed to hand over ownership of all of the animals, many of which were put down, although some were nursed back to good health and re-homed.

Sentencing: jailed for 150 days and banned indefinitely from keeping animals except for the family dog.

Daily Record
BBC News

Paisley, Renfrewshire: Andrea Smiley

#TheList Andrea Smiley, born 08/01/1980, of Blackstoun Oval, Paisley PA3 1LR – left her pet German shepherd to starve to death in her abandoned flat.

Heartless Andrea Smiley who abandoned an Alsatian to starve to death
Heartless Andrea Smiley who abandoned an Alsatian to starve to death

The desperate dog had locked condensation from a window in a desperate attempt for water.

A post mortem showed Snowy had no traces of food in her stomach and had lost two-thirds of her body weight.  She had been shut in a room of the ground-floor flat, amid total squalor with the door tied with string and wool to keep it shut. By the time worried neighbours raised the alarm it was too late and Snowy had already died from starvation.

Before sentence was passed, Smiley’s defence agent made a plea for mitigation. He said two psychiatric reports had been submitted showing that his client was emotionally unstable and experiencing bouts of depression which led her to self-harm.

He also said she was living in fear after being threatened following publicity from earlier hearings.

Sentence: 240 hours of community service. Banned from keeping animals for life.

BBC News