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Wednesday, 01 October 2014

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£1,200 reward to catch yobs who slayed animals on allotment

Three kind-hearted men are offering a £1,200 reward after being left sickened by the horrific killing of animals on a Penrith allotment.

Andrew Bateman photo
Andrew Bateman

Andrew Bateman, 42, was motivated to act after reading about the sick killers who slayed ferrets, ducks and chickens in an attack on the town’s Castletown allotments.

The thugs stuck forks through pet ferrets, pulled the bills from ducks’ faces, broke a hen’s neck and beheaded chickens in the mindless attack.

The ferrets belonged to disabled man Archie Lovell, 71, of Newton Reigny, who has been left distraught by the cruelty.

His daughter, Karen Donnison, 48, has already offered a reward for information leading to the successful prosecution of the offenders.

Mr Bateman’s offer comes on top of her reward – and he has been backed by two other Penrith men, who felt compelled to add their donations to the reward pot.

“I love animals,” Mr Bateman, landlord of the General Wolfe pub, Little Dockray, Penrith, said. “I can’t think of anything more horrific than what happened on those allotments.

“It just kept playing on my mind and so I decided to offer a £500 reward – this is personal, not from the business.”

Within hours of that reward being offered, businessman David Harding pledged an additional £500 before John Murphy added an extra £200.

Mr Bateman added: “It is just sickening, and we hope this helps catch those people responsible.”

Karen has welcomed the news of the additional reward, admitting she “didn’t believe it was real” at first. “I am overwhelmed,” she told the News & Star. “I am getting complete strangers approaching me, the support we have received is incredible.

“I have even had phone calls from people offering to replace dad’s ferrets, but he won’t keep ferrets again because he is terrified at what could happen.”

Karen thanked people for the support she has been given, but urged them to keep spreading the news of the appeal in a bid to get justice.

“I want to give the cash away,” she insisted, “because it means there has been justice. People can call me, the paper, the police or Crimestoppers – all we need is information which leads to a prosecution.”

Police say the attack happened between April 6 and 8.

Anyone with information can call police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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