The owner was alerted to the crime after hearing gunshots and then spotting Price loading something into the back of his van.
North Staffordshire Justice Centre heard police later found the 22-year-old with eight dead pheasants in his vehicle.
Prosecutor Sue Hayers said: “The injured party was at home at 9pm on January 14 when he heard what he thought sounded like silenced rifle shots. He saw a light shine in the trees and formed the opinion someone was outside.
“He saw a van parked up the road and saw someone throw something into the rear of the van. The person was holding a rifle. The vehicle pulled away.
“Police later located the van and the defendant. They recovered an air rifle, pellets and eight pheasants from the vehicle.”
When he was arrested, Price claimed he did not know the Whitmore land was private and said he intended to eat the birds.
The court heard the landowner, the Cavanagh-Mainwairing family, rears pheasants to be used in licensed shoots held on the estate, and the theft left them £320 out of pocket.
Price pleaded guilty to theft and a charge of trespassing at night with an air rifle to destroy game.
The offences put him in breach of a conditional discharge he received for another theft, when he was collecting scrap metal and took property that the owner had not agreed he could have.
Mohammed Fiaz, mitigating, said: “He has written a letter of apology for his behaviour. The reason Mr Price took the pheasants was for his own consumption. He wasn’t going to sell them on. He purchased the rifle legitimately.
“He was working as a labourer but unfortunately he lost that job a couple of weeks ago.”
Sentencing: 12-month community order with 80 hours of unpaid work; ordered to pay £320 to the victim. He must also pay a £120 fine for breaching the conditional discharge.
#TheList lifelong loser Niall Martin, born c. 1990, previously of Speedwell Road, Colchester and now the Strand in Ipswich – threw a police dog against a car, tried to choke her and wrenched her jaw open
Police were called after a row broke out between Niall Martin and his partner in Colchester and officers attended along with police dog, Ivy.
Martin was hiding and when the highly trained German Shepherd bit him. He reacted by hurling her against the car, choking her and pulling apart her jaws.
In a statement read out in court, Ivy’s dog handler said she genuinely feared for the animal’s life.
She said: “She bit him on the arm and then Martin threw Ivy against a parked car.
“I heard Ivy yelp with pain, he was trying to choke her.
“I punched him to the back of the head with all my force to try to get her free.
“I have never heard her make a noise like that before.
“I genuinely believe he was trying to kill or seriously injure her.”
Martin was convicted of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal following a trial. He admitted a charge of possessing cannabis.
Katie Armstrong-Mason, mitigating said: “On this particular day he had consumed alcohol and had an argument with his partner.
“The dog runs after him and bites him on the leg.
“The only reason he grabs the dog’s mouth is because he had been bitten and was in a lot of pain.
“He didn’t want to be arrested – the last time he was he got a four-week prison sentence.
“He has a borderline personality disorder and alcohol exacerbates his mental health problems – he gets in trouble when he drinks.”
Police dog Ivy retired from active duty earlier in January 2020. She was not badly hurt in the incident with Martin.
Chairman of the bench Don Wicks said: “This is a crossroads for you.
“It is a last chance scenario to change your life for the better.”
Sentencing: ten-week prison term suspended for a year. He must attend an accredited programme and 30 rehabilitation activity requirement days. Ordered to pay £300 costs, and £50 to the dog handler who suffered back pain during the incident.
Evans and Roberts were found guilty of theft after a trial. The pair had denied stealing Bruce, a black French bulldog belonging to Catrin Tudor, at Pwllheli in August 2019. Both maintained their innocence and showed no remorse, said a probation officer.
Diane Williams, prosecuting, said Bruce was in the garden of his owner’s home in Pwllheli at about 2.30pm on August 25, 2019. She was in the house with the front door open and Bruce was running in and out. The court heard that she found the garden gate slightly open and said Bruce could not have opened it.
Realising the dog was missing, she began a search and later reported the matter to police.
Family members posted messages about the dog’s disappearance on social media and there were sightings of Bruce in the company of two men and a woman in the street and on a beach. The following morning, Roberts was seen waiting for a bus with the dog and was arrested in Porthmadog .
Evans was arrested at his brother’s home the same morning.
A police officer said the two-year-old dog, who was valued at £1,500, was in a distressed state and very thirsty.
When Ms Tudor arrived at the police station, Bruce’s demeanour changed completely and he greeted her excitedly, said Ms Williams.
During the trial, Evans said he had been for a walk in the Abersoch area with Roberts and his brother Ben.
Passing Ms Tudor’s house, they had seen a dog which began following them, he said.
Evans said he had ignored the dog at first but had asked an elderly couple if they knew who owned him.
He said they had also knocked on several doors in the area but got no reply. They had taken the dog with them to his brother’s flat and later went to the beach with the animal, he said.
Ben Evans told the court he had recognised the animal and told the others who owned it and to return it.
Both Evans and Roberts denied intending to sell the dog for £1,000
Sentencing Evans – 26-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months; 180 hours of unpaid work; ordered to pay Bruce’s owner £50 compensation and £712 costs; 35-day probation service course. The court heard the offence took place just days after Evans was made the subject of a community order.
Roberts – 12-month community order; 150 hours of unpaid work; 10-day rehabilitation activity requirement. Ordered to pay £50 compensation and £680 costs.
#TheList Rhys Anderson, born c. 2000, of Kensington Road, Greenbank, Plymouth PL4 – launched a sadistic attack on a herring gull chick causing the baby bird to lose his leg
In July 2019 Rhys Anderson caught a seagull chick, and proceeded to throw him in the air, kick him, and then beat him with a broomstick. Anderson and an as yet unidentified accomplice were caught on CCTV laughing manically as they attacked the helpless birth.
Anderson pleaded guilty before city magistrates to hurting the herring gull chick in Plymouth on 10 July 2019.
Sentencing: 12-month community order with 60 hours of unpaid work. Completion of a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement and thinking skills course. Ordered to pay £250 compensation to Athena Wildlife & Bird of Prey Care.
#TheList Daniel Ashleigh Williams, born c. 1989, of Garden Suburbs, Trimsaran, Wales SA17 – threw a pet dog 30 feet out of a window, causing him to suffer serious leg and hip injuries.
Williams threw four-year-old chihuahua/Jack Russell crossbreed Dobbie out of a two-storey high window after breaking into his owner’s flat. The tiny dog fell 30 feet onto the ground below and suffered injuries to his legs and hip.
Williams pleaded guilty to causing criminal damage and a further count of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal.
A victim impact statement was read out in court on behalf of Dobbie’s owner Jordanna Davies, which revealed that since the incident, Dobbie had been taken to the vets for an operation on his leg and hip.
Ms Davies had paid immediate emergency vet fees amassing £2,222.21, and was told if she could not raise the funds required, Dobbie would have to be put to sleep.
Dobbie is still to undergo further leg surgery which will cost £3,000, and a hip operation. Until then, he is currently in plaster.
“It caused me great stress and anxiety,” the statement read.
“I don’t feel safe living there anymore after knowing he was able to smash the window and get in. I was settled before the incident took place. I had to live with my window boarded up for a while.
“Dobbie is a small, defenceless pup who would not hurt anyone.”
Williams’ lawyer, Rebecca Carter told the court that her client had “substantial mental health difficulties and suffers from borderline personality disorder, depression and anxiety.”
Sentencing: Jailed for 18 weeks and ordered to pay £1,587.61 compensation to Dobbie’s owner. Banned from keeping animals for two years
#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
But Boswell appealed his sentence straight after the hearing, with an appeal then held at Cambridge Crown Court on July 20, 2017.
It was reported how Pia the white Siamese kitten, worth about £450, belonged to Cambridge resident Caroline King.
Ms King noticed her cat was missing from her garden about 7.20pm on April 7, 2017, and when she went round to ask Boswell about her missing cat, he told her he had been hunting cats since he was 17.
Boswell had told her: “I don’t like cats, I hate them. They are a menace to wildlife and birds.”
Ms King asked if Boswell was joking but he replied: “No, I’ve shot it twice – once in the head, once in the body and I have put it in the neighbour’s garden. You had better knock on their door.”
Ms King went to her neighbours’ garden where she saw her kitten lying motionless on the floor, making no attempt to move.
The kitten had to have her right leg amputated. One air rifle pellet caused a tear in Pia’s windpipe, while the other shattered her femur.
Ms King paid £5,168 for Pia’s veterinary treatment bills after the cat was rushed to a vet and spent more than a week at a Cambridge veterinary hospital.
In a victim impact statement, Ms King said: “I feel devastated and horrified and cannot fathom why somebody I do not know would carry out such an act.
“I cannot believe Chris would be so calm and calculated over what he has done as if he got some enjoyment from it – as he did not have to tell us and could have chosen to remain quiet.”
Following Boswell’s initial sentencing, a neighbour raised concerns he could have something to do with the disappearance of between 12 and 20 cats that have gone missing in the area in the previous five years.
Michael Magee, mitigating for Boswell in the appeal hearing, said Boswell became increasingly isolated and lived a very solitary existence after his retirement.
He told the court that at the time of the incident, Boswell was on painkillers to deal with chronic arthritis and an itching rash “much like scabies” which had spread over his body.
Mr Magee added: “He became increasingly housebound and this led to a deterioration in his mental state.
“In terms of culpability, one can understand how he fostered his little garden and the birds that came into that garden…that was his very small connection to the previous active life that he had.
“With the background of the mental health issues, he picked up an air rifle while in drink, which belonged to his son, and stupidly shot the cat.
“His desire was to protect the birds, not to cause the cat harm.
“With matters of his pain, the cancer, the severe itching rash that had covered the vast majority of his body, the loneliness and perhaps the focus on his family of birds, he called it; he took that relatively stupid decision.”
Mr Magee said Boswell was a rowing coach for many years and had recently been volunteering two nights week for the Cam Rowers charity.
He urged the court to suspend Boswell’s prison sentence, telling them he had sought help for his alcohol addiction entirely by himself and that he was now in a position to be more active in his life.
After retiring to consider the appeal, Recorder Sandeep Kainth warned Boswell that his actions were “grave and serious” but said he felt satisfied that Boswell’s prison sentence could be suspended.
He added: “This was a deliberate attempt to cause suffering; this is evidenced by your actions of shooting the cat two times not one.
“But there are more mitigating features than aggravating features in this case.
“You have an excellent work ethic, you are a man of good character, this incident was isolated and you have shown genuine remorse.
“The risk of you offending again is very low; we accept that your motive was to protect the birds in your garden.
“It’s disappointing that at the age of 73 you find yourself before the courts, but we accept that for you this is a salutary lesson in itself.”
Sentencing: Boswell’s immediate prison sentence earlier handed down by magistrates was amended to a 12-week sentence, suspended for one year.
The court heard that Boswell had paid the £1,500 compensation to Ms King and his air rifle had been forfeited and destroyed.
#TheList Billy Michael Furey, born ca 1997, of 35 Elmfield Avenue, Huddersfield HD3 4SQ – allowed his dog to be “dangerously out of control”. The dog attacked a woman and her Jack Russell and was ordered to be destroyed.
Furey was convicted of owning a dangerous dog which attacked Elizabeth Duffield. Mrs Duffield spent five days in hospital following the attack near her home in Golcar on March 13, 2014. She was left with horrific hand injuries and facing the ordeal of extensive surgery to repair the damage.
Mrs Duffield’s Jack Russell Buster was also injured in the attack.
Furey pleaded guilty to owning a dog dangerously out of control and causing injury when he appeared before Kirklees Magistrates.
The magistrates ordered that the dog must be destroyed unless an appeal is lodged within the next 21 days.
Furey was also sentenced for dishonestly receiving stolen goods. He drove a stolen Mazda on Riddings Road, Deighton, without a licence or insurance.
When police stopped him panic-stricken Furey reversed the Mazda into the police vehicle behind him and got stuck.
Sentencing: He was given a community order to take part in an accredited programme for 33 days and ordered to pay £200 compensation for dog attack. His driving licence endorsed with eight points.