News

Man to serve no jail time for sick attack on pet dog

Jonathan Neil Wood, 25, was sentenced to two years probation and ordered to complete 200 hours of community service.
Jonathan Neil Wood, 25, was sentenced to two years probation and ordered to complete 200 hours of community service. Georja Ryan

ANIMAL abusers are becoming more inclined to videotape their shocking cruelty, an inspector for the RSPCA has said after a Warwick man walked free from court for such crimes.

Jonathan Neil Wood avoided jail yesterday for torturing his pet kelpie, Charlie, over a seven-month period last year.

The 25-year-old father of two failed to treat the dog when it jumped out of a window and broke its leg, leading to permanent deformity.

Wood intentionally hurt the injured leg, rammed the dog's head into walls and dropped it from high places.

A number of the attacks were captured on Wood's mobile phone and in one video he is seen to "fist pump" in a moment of perceived glory after hurting the dog.

Inspector for the RSPCA Shawn Jensen attended yesterday's proceedings and said the number of serious animal cruelty cases is on the rise, with more and more being videotaped.

The disturbing videos are also making their way on to such social media sites as Facebook.

Mr Jensen said it was worrying when videos of abuse were made, as it showed the time and effort abusers were willing to put into their crimes.

"It is concerning because it shows a degree of pre-meditation, enjoyment and the person is obviously not worried about what their peers are thinking," he said.

Mr Jensen said while the organisation was always eager to see tougher penalties for animal cruelty, it understands magistrates are bound by precedence.

He said he hoped Wood received the treatment he requires to overcome this behaviour and commended the police on their efforts.

"We are very appreciative of the work that was put in by the Warwick Police in bringing this matter to court," he said.

Police prosecutor Steve de Lissa said he believed Wood got some enjoyment from hurting the dog.

"In this particular case Your Honour, there has been an amount of torture by the defendant," he said.

"(Wood) must have been getting some sort of thrill from it."

In sentencing, Acting Magistrate Dennis Beutel highlighted the repetitive nature of Wood's abusive behaviour.

"This is not a one-off situation - there are three separate charges and a continuing course of conduct," he said.

"It is also clear in the facts that in one of the instances of cruelty the animal was suffering so much it bit you to escape."

Wood pleaded guilty to three counts of animal cruelty and one of breaching his duty of care for the animal.

He was sentenced to two years probation and ordered him to complete 200 hours of community service.

And additional order was made, prohibiting the 25-year-old from owning or caring for an animal for the next four years.

Mr Beutel warned Wood probation was not a "light sentence" and required him to submit to psychiatric and medical treatment as required.

Topics:  animal cruelty, animals, community service, crime, dog, pets, rspca, video, warwick magistrates court



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