Otago Daily Times

Shearer jailed for cru­elty to lamb

- JARED MOR­GAN Oxford · Chris Back · Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

A SHEARER who twice struck a lamb be­cause it broke his shear­ing comb, caus­ing in­juries that re­sulted in its death, has been jailed for 16 months.

Christo­pher John Tredin­nick (51), of Cromwell, ap­peared for sen­tence on a charge of wil­ful ill­treat­ment of an an­i­mal, be­fore Judge Michael Turner in the Alexan­dra Dis­trict Court yes­ter­day.

Judge Turner read the Min­istry for Pri­mary In­dus­tries (MPI) sum­mary of facts.

On Fe­bru­ary 17 Tredin­nick was work­ing as a shear­ing con­trac­tor on a farm in Ox­ford shear­ing lambs.

While shear­ing a lamb it be­gan to strug­gle and broke the comb on Tredin­nick’s hand­piece.

In anger, he turned the hand­piece over and hit the lamb twice in the right eye with the pro­trud­ing ten­sion knob.

This frac­tured the lamb’s eye socket and caused frag­ments of the or­bital bone to go into the lamb’s eye.

Tredin­nick then put the lamb back into the hold­ing pen be­hind him.

Shortly after he went into the pen tak­ing his hand­piece with him and hit the lamb again.

This caused a se­ri­ous skull frac­ture with mul­ti­ple frac­ture lines and a piece of bone 3cm in di­am­e­ter was dis­lodged into the skull.

He then pulled the lamb out of the hold­ing pen, still alive but ‘‘limp and un­re­spon­sive’’ and shore it be­fore push­ing it down the chute where it later died of its in­juries.

When he fin­ished work he took the lamb’s body from the bot­tom of the chute and put it in his ve­hi­cle.

When ques­tioned by the farmer he told him the lamb had suf­fo­cated and he would take it home to feed his dog.

On Fe­bru­ary 21, MPI an­i­mal wel­fare in­spec­tors searched Tredin­nick’s ad­dress and re­cov­ered the lamb’s re­mains which were taken for a post­mortem to a vet­eri­nar­ian, who con­cluded the lamb had died of two ‘‘dis­tinct episodes of blunt force trauma’’ re­sult­ing in the frac­tures.

The vet­eri­nar­ian said the lamb would have been in ex­treme pain and dis­tress and the in­juries caused its death.

When spo­ken to by MPI, Tredin­nick de­clined a for­mal in­ter­view, said the in­ci­dent never hap­pened and the al­le­ga­tions were ‘‘bull...’’.

Judge Turner also read other ev­i­dence.

In Fe­bru­ary, the So­ci­ety for the Preven­tion of Cru­elty to An­i­mals is­sued Tredin­nick with a let­ter re­gard­ing phys­i­cal ill­treat­ment of his pet Ger­man shep­herd.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand