Bad break at rodeo costs $2k
Animal Liberation Queensland filmed bull incident
A CENTRAL Queensland man has been ordered to pay a $2200 fine after a bull was injured at a rodeo at the Great Western Hotel in March.
Peter Scott Wallace, 44, pleaded guilty Tuesday in Rockhampton Magistrates Court to one count of breaching his duty of care towards a bull by failing to ensure the handling of it was appropriate.
Mr Wallace, the owner of Wallace Bucking Bulls, had been contracted to provide bulls to a rodeo event at the Great Western Hotel on March 7. As one of the bulls exited the chute, it broke its left hind leg.
The court heard Animal Liberation Queensland members at the event took video of the incident and approached Mr Wallace afterwards in the “authorised only” area of the venue and asked him questions.
RSPCA prosecutor Jordan Ahlstrand said Mr Wallace told them twice he had phoned a veterinarian and had administered painkillers to the bull.
He said the witnesses claimed Mr Wallace, using a cattle prod, loaded the bull on a truck 90 minutes after the incident.
Defence lawyer Maree Willey said Mr Wallace claimed it was 30–45 minutes after the incident and the cattle prod was not used on the animal but on the fence next to it.
“In his experience the noise from this causes animals to move,” she said.
The court heard Mr Wallace drove the animal to a location 15 minutes away to euthanase it himself as he had deemed, based on his experience, the injury beyond repair.
The RSPCA wants veterinarians to carry out euthanasia without a firearm in such cases.
Ms Willey said Mr Wallace had worked with Professional Bull Riders Association in the past and it had always provided veterinarians on site at events.
She said he had called his usual vet at Biloela on the night but there was no answer and he had asked the Great Western Hotel owner for a vet’s phone number, but had no luck with that call either.
Ms Willey said he has since obtained the Capricorn Vet after hours number in case such a situation arose in the future.
She said after the incident, Mr Wallace raised concerns he had with the then Great Western Hotel owner about the surface of the arena being too hard.
Magistrate Cameron Press asked why the Great Western Hotel or PBR was not a party in this case.
“Surely there should be some onus upon the organisation of the place to provide veterinary care or to at least inform the contractors coming and providing the animals that there would be no vet available,” he said.
Mr Press ordered Mr Wallace to pay the $2200 fine plus $699.55 expenses.
RSPCA had sought a $5000 fine.