#TheList Daniel Stasik, born c. 1988, of 6 Walker Grove, Hatfield AL10 9PL – allowed his banned-breed ‘fighting’ dog to savage a pet cat and failed to get help for the stricken animal
At around 11am on June 23, 2018, a pitbull-type dog owned by Daniel Stasik chased a cat named Shelly into an alleyway in Walker Grove and attacked her. Stasik grabbed the dog, but was unable to keep control of him.
He did not attempt to assist the cat or find her owners to get medical assistance.
Around 1am the following morning, Shelly was found by her owner in a nearby garden covered in blood and faeces and unable to place any weight on her hind legs.
Due to the length of time she had been left, there were maggots around her wounds.
Over the next few days, Shelly’s condition deteriorated and following multiple treatments and attempts at resuscitation, she died from her injuries on July 1, 2018.
On July 20, officers from the Welwyn Hatfield Safer Neighbourhood Team and the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Dog Unit attended Stasik’s address to execute a warrant to seize his dog.
The dog was examined and confirmed to be substantially a pit bull-type.
Stasik was reported to court for possessing a fighting dog under Section 1 of the Dangerous Dogs Act and causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal under Section 4 of the Animal Welfare Act.
At court, Stasik pleaded guilty to possessing a fighting dog and, while initially pleading not guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to Shelly, was found guilty of that offence.
PC Gavin Richardson, from the Welwyn Hatfield West Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: “Pit bulls are banned in the UK and Stasik’s dog posed a very serious danger to public safety.
“Not only did Stasik have possession of a banned dog breed, but he made no attempts to help save the cat and instead simply left her to die.
“This was extremely distressing for her owners who found their beloved pet in an incredibly distressed state with horrendous injuries.
“I hope that this sentence provides some justice for the victims and that the public feel safe knowing that Stasik will not be allowed to have dog for another decade.”
Sentencing: 240 hours of unpaid community work. Ordered to pay compensation to Shelly’s owners for vet costs and to the police for kenneling costs. Banned from having custody of a dog for 10 years. Stasik’s dog was ordered to be put down, unless an appeal is lodged within 21 days.
=== Update We’re building quite a profile on this piece of filth. He is from Poland. He came to the UK in 2009 to work as a painter/decorator but is now living on benefits. He showed no remorse in court and he and his friend seemed to find the proceedings amusing. He freely admitted in court that he beat his dog. Another cat belonging to Shelly’s heartbroken owner died after being deliberately poisoned. This happened just after Stasik was charged. Coincidence? Stasik has another address in Prayle Grove, London NW2 1BD
#TheList Joe Purvis, born c. 1993, of William Tennant Way, Upton-upon-Severn, Worcester WR8 OLP – broke his kitten’s jaw and caused what are believed to be burns to her head; kitten also lost a leg
Purvis took his 12-week-old Maine Coon cat, named Indico, to a vet in November 2018 where she was found to have three fractures to her head.
The pet, bought for £50 several months earlier on Facebook, also had an open wound on the top of her head, and lost a leg while in Purvis’ care.
Purvis admitted to giving Indica a “back-hander”, claiming she had bitten him, but did not accept that the marks were caused by a burn. Instead, he claimed she hit her head on a tap while he was trying to wash her.
The former student at Heart of Worcestershire College accepted a charge of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal when he appeared before magistrates.
Sara Pratt, prosecuting, said the defendant had taken the kitten to vets in September 2018 and she had such severe injuries to her leg that they had no choice but to amputate it.
On November 9, 2018, Purvis then took her again to Coldicott & Kingsway Veterinary Clinic in Tewkesbury and was described by staff as smelling “overwhelmingly of cannabis”.
Mrs Pratt said he told vets he believed the cat had suffered a broken jaw due to him giving her a “back-hander the night before” after she’d defecated on his bed and bit him.
He also told them the open sore on her head was caused by her hitting her head while he washed faeces off her.
Purvis said to vets he “couldn’t cope with such a demanding animal” and that she was the “first and last” pet he would ever own.
Mrs Pratt said the defendant had been unable to sleep the night of the incident and had toyed with the idea of taking her somewhere to “let her go as a stray” but decided to take her to Coldicott clinic instead.
The vets told him Indico needed an X-ray, but he said he didn’t have any money and “did not want the cat” before becoming “verbally aggressive”.
When veterinary staff wouldn’t agree to take the kitten off him, he told them there was “no proof” he owned her anyway.
He added that if he was forced to take her home he would “let her go” and described the vets as “money grabbing” despite them offering to give some treatment for free.
The court heard Purvis then agreed to sign over the cat to the practice and started to fill out a document but then “screwed it up” and exited.
The cat was left at the vets where she was examined, and it was determined she had fractures to the eye and jaw.
The wound to the head appeared to be a burn rather than a graze, as Purvis described it.
Mrs Pratt said vets said there was a “crunching of the bones” on the right-hand jaw bone.
The kitten’s general demeanour was said to be “nervous” in contrast to most young cats who are usually “bold and active” when going to the vets.
An RSPCA inspector went to Purvis’ home later the same day. Purvis agreed to sign over Indico to them and was later interviewed at a local police station.
Mrs Pratt said “there was significant intervention in terms of operations to put right the injuries” which had proved costly to the vets as Purvis hadn’t paid any money.
Defending Purvis Judith Kenney, of Judith Kenney Solicitors in Worcester, said she had seen pictures of the cat while she was living with her client and she was “happy and contented”.
A cat owner herself, Kenney said it is often the case that once a young cat goes through such trauma as a major operation and re-adjustment to life, they are “never the same”.
“The reality is, then she couldn’t defecate properly in her litter tray anymore,” she explained, and went on to say she believes Purvis was not properly told how to look after her after the amputation and “struggled with her”.
Referring to the day in November in which he struck the cat, Kenney said: “Only he knows the truth of the matter.”
“Why would he take the kitten to the vets and admit what he had done if he didn’t have some compassion towards her?”
She said he became agitated at the vets because he “couldn’t afford to pay anymore” fees and had a hospital appointment later that morning.
She said he is often “impulsive” and “that’s part of his difficulties”.
At the last hearing in February, Kenney had said her client suffers from mental health problems.
Kenney said: “He wants me to ensure that you are aware that he did the right thing. He took the cat to the vets. He didn’t do the right thing in hitting her and breaking her jaw.”
She added: “There has been absolute vilification of him in the press. When I read some of the comments, I just couldn’t believe some individuals can’t see that there’s two sides to a story.”
“He is an animal lover,” she continued. “He accepts what he did on that day was not right and if he could put the clock back, he would.”
The court heard the cat has now been rehomed.
Sentencing: 14 weeks in prison, suspended for 12 months. Costs and charges totalling £515. Banned from owning any animals for 10 years.
#TheList Frankie Jane Kane, born 03/07/99 of Printfield Walk, Woodside, Aberdeen AB24, and Yasmin Doherty (aka Yasmin Walker), born circa 2000, of Marischal Court, Castlehill, Aberdeen AB11 – filmed themselves abusing an escaped boa constrictor in the street
Vile Frankie Kane and Yasmin Doherty shared twisted videos of themselves mistreating the snake, named Esmerelda, on social media site Snapchat.
Kane hurled the escape animal 10ft across an Aberdeen street and Doherty swung her above her head.
The disturbing footage which they captured in the early hours of July 4, 2018, showed Esmerelda “writhing in pain” and sparked widespread outrage on social media.
Kane later confessed to causing the animal unnecessary suffering and throwing her, while Doherty admitted the same but also pleaded guilty to “spinning the snake around” and causing her to suffer injury.
Fiscal depute Rebecca Clark said: “The snake’s owner, who had it for three years, kept it in an enclosure in his bedroom and noticed it was missing – but thought it was elsewhere in the property.
“It was 3am when the two accused were outside the Marischal Court block of flats and found it.
“Both were under the influence of alcohol at the time, and Doherty began filming the snake on her mobile phone and posting it on Snapchat.
“Kane then picked it up and threw it several feet across the road.
“The snake appeared to be moving in a distressed state and Doherty said ‘it’s real’ before before picking it up, spinning it around above her head and throwing it.”
A passer-by intervened at that point and handed Esmerelda in to the police, who gave her to the Scottish SPCA.
Ms Clark added that the 4ft snake was “regurgitating blood”, and “appeared to be convulsing in pain”.
She said: “The chief inspector described the animal as writhing about in agony, coughing up blood and clearly dying.
“The decision was made to humanely destroy the snake, which had severe internal injuries.”
Kane’s solicitor maintained that his client did not realise Esmerelda was a live animal at first.
He said: “She though it was a fake snake, but quickly became aware it was real after picking it up and hearing it hiss at her.
“She should have placed it on the ground but she threw the snake through the air.”
Defence agent Tony Burgess said Doherty had lost her job as a result of the incident and is now “struggling to find her way back into employment”.
He added: “She accepts that her behaviour was completely reprehensible.”
Mr Burgess said the snake may have suffered some of her injuries when she escaped from her home and fell “from quite high up” on the multi-storey block.
Sheriff Aitken said he had “limited sympathy” for the teenagers, whose troubles he said were “nobody’s fault but their own”.
He added: “I hope it was drunken stupidity that led to this, rather than an underlying defect in your character. People do not like those who abuse animals.”
The Scottish SPCA welcomed the sentencing of Kane and Doherty but expressed disappointment that no order was imposed preventing them from keeping pets.
Scottish SPCA chief inspector John Carle said: “Although we are pleased to hear this sentence has been passed down we are disappointed a ban was not also imposed.
“Doherty and Kane caused cruel and unnecessary suffering to Esmerelda the snake.
“Treating any animal this way is despicable behaviour and the injuries caused ultimately contributed to the death of the poor snake.”
Sentencing: Kane was ordered to perform 80 hours of unpaid work in the next six months, and Doherty 120 hours. No ban on keeping animals was imposed on either of them.
#TheList Alexander Andrew McGhee, born 27/02/74, of Wellesley Road, Methil, Fife – battered his rescue dog to death in a drunken rage
The dog, named Murphy, suffered numerous injuries on his sides, lower back, abdomen and neck, as well as the brain bleed which caused him to die.
His owner Alexander “Eck” McGhee, a train driver with ScotRail based at Edinburgh’s Waverley Station, had denied killing the lurcher, but was found guilty following a trial at Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court.
Neighbours giving evidence described hearing a drunken McGhee return home in the early hours of the morning of 8 July 2017 followed by “yelping” and “scrabbling” noises coming from his flat.
They claimed to have heard an aggressive male voice shouting “bastard” and what sounded like “a dog being thrown against a wall”.
The couple said they were forced to leave the property because their own dog was so distressed by the horrific sounds coming from next door. They called police who attended some hours later.
During initial interview McGhee told police officers that Murray had bolted from the flat after he accidentally left the front door open.
McGhee said he had gone out to look for Murray and found him dead at the side of a nearby road. He said that the dog must have been hit by a vehicle. McGhee then led officers to the lurcher’s body which he had put in the boot of his car.
When asked by officers about injuries to his hand, which he appeared to be trying to hide with the sleeve of his jumper, McGhee claimed that he had punched the wall in temper after Murray escaped.
Veterinary evidence presented in court contradicted McGhee’s claims that Murray had been run over.
Veterinary pathologist Dr Bryn Tennant said he believed Murphy had sustained the injuries from being “hit, kicked or shaken with considerable force”.
Dr Tennant went on: “The outcome of the post-mortem examination was that this dog had been subjected to multiple traumatic incidents.
“The constellation of injuries, in my opinion, were not consistent with a road traffic accident.
“There is a very, very remote possibility that this dog was struck by a vehicle but from what I saw, I do not believe that happened on the basis on my examination.”
“The bleeding around the brain is the same as boxers get when they haemorrhage.”
Dr Tennant said that he would have expected to see damage to the skin and paws or crush injuries if the animal had been struck by a vehicle.
Giving evidence in his defence McGhee wept as he described how he had adopted Murray as a puppy in 2013 and he was “emaciated and full of worms and fleas”.
He described the dog, who was named after the tennis star Andy Murray, as “the biggest sook”, saying he would “go to anyone”.
Asked about the moment when he said he found Murray’s body, McGhee said: “He was just lying there. Just cold. Heavy.
“He had a tiny bit of blood coming out of his mouth. That was it.
There were four or five guys on their way to work at BiFab who asked me if it was my dog and offered to help me put him in the back of the car.”
McGhee’s lawyer, Scott McKenzie, asked him: “The neighbours describe hearing a fairly distressing incident going on within your property with the dogs. Did you engage in any distressing conduct towards your dogs?”
He said: “I’m not going to rescue dogs to hurt them.”
Mr McKenzie asked: “Did you lose your temper with the dog and cause him so much pain that he was in agony for minutes or possibly hours before he died?”
Fiscal depute Ronnie Hay told McGhee he was lying and said he had actually come home from a night out in a drunken state.
Mr Hay said: “Is it not the case that you came home drunk, acting aggressively and you took it out on the dogs and one of the dogs paid the ultimate price?”
He continued: “The couple next door left their flat because of the noise emanating from his property.
“When they returned they spoke of a bottle of bleach being outside the premises that wasn’t there when they left.
“They were adamant the noises were not a dog fight.
“They spoke of a male voice talking aggressively using language such as ‘bastard’.
“One heard slapping sounds and one said it sounded like the dog was being thrown against a wall.”
McGhee dismissed these allegations as lies, however, believing the neighbours giving evidence against him had a grudge against his police officer partner.
Having considered all of the evidence, Sheriff Alistair Thornton said he was satisfied that McGhee had caused Murphy’s death by inflicting blunt force trauma and found him guilty.
Sentencing McGhee Sheriff Thornton told him: “The veterinary evidence provided in that case indicated the degree of blunt force trauma suffered by the dog was substantial.”
“The social work report I have read indicates you maintain your denial of the offence and accordingly there is no remorse expressed by you.”
However, he said that he had to consider the impact of a jail sentence on McGhee’s family and children and the fact that he was a working man with a productive life. Taking all of this into account he handed him a community payback order and a 20-year ban on owning or having sole custody of a dog.
McGhee and his partner have another rescue dog, Dora, who has been cared for by a relative when his partner is absent since the offence on July 8, 2017.
McGhee’s solicitor said a rescue charity [source article states the Scottish Greyhound Trust but this isn’t correct] had monitored Dora and there were no concerns about either her or a guinea pig the couple have.
Sentencing: McGhee was placed on a community payback order and told to perform 240 hours of unpaid work. He was also banned from owning or having sole custody of any dog for 20 years.
#TheList Henry Hamilton, born 26/10/1953, of 10 Blackwood Street, Belfast BT7 3AS: convicted of animal cruelty after his cockapoo puppy’s rotting and broken leg has to be amputated
Henry Hamilton pleaded guilty to a number of offences including causing unnecessary suffering to his pet, Gypsy.
The prosecution was brought by Belfast City Council after a vet reported the cruelty.
Henry is reported to have ignored vet instructions on how to properly care for his little golden ‘cockapoo’ following the injury, leaving the same bandage on the dog for five weeks.
A council spokesperson said: ” In May 2017, Belfast City Council’s animal welfare service attended a veterinary practice in East Belfast to assess a female golden cockapoo-type dog that had its left hind leg bandaged.
“The leg had rotted away as a result of an untreated fracture. As a result, the pup, called Gypsy, had to have its leg amputated.
“A council investigation showed that following an initial consultation with a vet on 19 April, 2017, regarding an injury to the dog’s leg, Henry Hamilton did not follow the vet’s instructions to make sure the dog’s leg was cared for properly.
“Instead, the initial bandage remained in place from 19 April 2017 until 26 May 2017, causing the dog unnecessary suffering, severe pain and the amputation of its leg as a direct result of not receiving proper veterinary care needed.
“Initially Henry Hamilton pleaded not guilty to offences, however, during the contested hearing in November 2018, submitted a guilty plea which was adjourned for sentencing until today.
“Today (14 Feb 2018) he received a six month custodial sentence, suspended for two years.”
Gypsy, who now has only three legs, has since been re-homed.
Sentencing: six month custodial sentence, suspended for two years. Disqualified from owning and keeping animals for five years.
#TheList Tomas Gabriel Couceiro Ferreira, born 02/04/1996, of 15 Edmund Street, Shaw, Oldham OL2 8EY – beat his Bichon Frise dog with a metal pole in a series of violent attacks, causing her to suffer multiple broken bones and to lose an eye
Tomas Ferreira’s Bichon Frise Skye was discovered with a broken jaw, broken ribs, a broken bone in her back leg and 10 broken teeth.
She also suffered a ruptured eyeball which had to be removed, completely robbing her of her sight because she was already blind in her other eye.
Tameside Magistrates’ Court heard that Ferreira was violent and regularly abused the dog.
When the RSPCA visited Ferreira’s then home in Gamesley, which is near Glossop, Derbyshire, they discovered blood splatters around the house and a number of metal poles with blood on them, including one with white hair on it.
Skye was rescued by a member of the public who saw her in a distressed state and took her to Victoria Veterinary centre in Glossop where she was given pain relief and the RSPCA were alerted.
Inspector Nichola Waterworth went to collect Skye and she was taken to the RSPCA’s Greater Manchester Animal Hospital where the extent of her injuries were discovered.
Veterinary staff were worried that the fractured jaw may have been beyond repair as it was an older injury but Skye was able to recover by wearing a special muzzle for a month which held the broken bones in place while they healed.
Ferreira was found guilty causing unnecessary suffering to a dog by the infliction of a blunt force trauma and physical violence.
Ferreira has a history of violence and in November 2017, when he was living in Taunton, Somerset, faced charges of assault against two women and a man. The outcome of his trial is unknown.
Skye has since been rehomed and is said to still be an affectionate and confident dog, despite her ordeal.
Inspector Waterworth said: “The member of the public who rescued the dog said she looked broken and was really concerned for her well-being.
“How she survived such horrific attacks is unbelievable really but she had so many injuries and broken bones there was a real concern she wouldn’t pull through.
“But she is a brave little character and despite having her ruptured eye removed, making her completely blind, she also had to wear a special muzzle for 24 hours a day, seven days a week and eat with it on – she went through all this and has made an amazing recovery.
“The jail sentence shows violence against animals, like Skye, will not be tolerated. I am delighted to say she has now been re-homed into a loving environment where she is being given the life she deserves.
“Despite her blindness she is confident and still likes to get out and about and explore and she is so affectionate.”
Sentence: Jailed for 18 weeks; ordered to pay £150 victim surcharge. Banned for life from keeping animals.
#TheList Kyle Evans, born c. 1989, and partner Abigail Hanrahan, born c. 1988, both of Conway Street, Birkenhead CH41 – failed to seek treatment for their kitten’s horrific injuries likely caused by a physical attack
Wirral Magistrates Court heard that eight-month-old Felix was left with his jaw detached from his chin for SIX weeks until a concerned member of the public alerted the RSPCA.
The kitten was blind and unable to walk properly when eventually seen by a vet – and suffered a brain injury which means he now wobbles when he walks.
Owners Kyle Evans and his partner Abigail Hanrahan claimed the injury was caused by the kitten running into a litter tray.
But the court heard from an expert veterinary witness who suggested the injury was more likely due to a physical attack.
The couple pleaded guilty to a charge of causing unnecessary suffering to a cat by failing to provide prompt and appropriate veterinary attention and magistrates banned them from keeping animals for ten years.
RSPCA inspector Anthony Joynes, who investigated the case, said: “He really was in state and obviously the injury to his jaw – which had been left untreated – was causing a lot of suffering.
“The vet also found a swelling to his head which caused blindness but with treatment his sight has been restored.
“It seems he has a brain injury which means he can be wobbly when he walks but he is doing so well considering and is such a lovely cat.
“He was so timid at first but now he has been in the care of the RSPCA he likes nothing more than to be stroked.
“He has come on leaps and bounds.
“There is never any excuse not to seek veterinary treatment if a pet is in need and Felix must have suffered terribly over this long period.”
The court heard Felix was injured on or around June 1 2018 but he was left without treatment until the RSPCA was called in on July 16.
He was taken to an animal hospital where he was treated for three weeks for a swelling on his head, enabling him to regain his sight.
The animal charity says he has made a remarkable recovery and hopes he will be re-homed soon.
Sentencing: Kyle Evans – 12-month Community Order including 140 hours of unpaid work and a 20-day rehabilitation activity requirement. Ordered to pay £240 costs with an £84 victim surcharge.
Abigail Hanrahan – £100 fine, £100 costs and a £35 victim surcharge.
Both were banned from keeping animals for ten years.
#TheList Arnold Dawson, born c. 1989, and Kerry Lee Dowson, born c. 1984, both of 36 Armada Close, Basildon SS15 5GP – for cruelty towards a kitten who was injured six times in eight weeks
Dawson and Dowson admitted failing to meet the welfare needs of a black male kitten called Binx by not protecting him from recurrent injury.
The court heard Binx had been taken to the vet six times in eight weeks with injuries consistent with blunt force trauma particularly to the head.
An expert witness report found that Binx had a number of injuries and some were very severe causing large swellings to the head, fracture of the skull, a rib fracture and internal bleeding within the eyes.
The injuries to the kitten’s eyes resulted in eventual blindness.
The explanations given by Dawson and Dowson for the possible cause of injuries suffered by Binx were not consistent with their severity and the expert concluded that Binx had been subject to repeated incidents of intentional injury.
The court was also told the couple’s previous pet, a dog called Honey, had a similar pattern of unexplained injuries in her medical history which sadly resulted in Honey being put down.
Speaking after the case RSPCA Inspector Adam Jones said: “Binx was taken to a vet by the owner on six occasions over an eight week period, with injuries consistent with blunt force trauma.
“A deprivation order was made and Binx has now been signed over into the care of the RSPCA. We will now look to find him a new home.
“He really is the sweetest boy, despite the injuries he has suffered. He is now blind as a result of the cataracts, but this doesn’t seem to restrict him and he is still just the loveliest cat you could meet. I am certain he will make someone a wonderful addition to their family.”
Despite initially denying the charge, both Dawson and Dowson admitted one count each of failing to protect Binx from recurrent injury.
Sentencing: Dawson – 12-month community order, 200 hours of unpaid work, a 10-day rehabilitation activity requirement and ordered to take part in a thinking skills programme.
Dowson – 12-month community order, a 30-day rehabilitation activity requirement and a six-month curfew between the hours of 7pm and 7am.
Both were disqualified from keeping all animals for 10 years and each ordered to pay £600 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.