Animal torture appalls
A JOONDALUP magistrate said in jailing a kangaroo torturer yesterday he was sending a message that “this kind of extreme cruelty to animals will not be tolerated”.
Magistrate Gregory Benn sentenced former bikie associate Luke Kevin Dempster (26) to two years jail over the “appalling” kangaroo torture and killing that shocked Perth earlier this year, the setting alight of a chicken and his role in the firing of a gel blaster at bystanders in Craigie.
Mr Benn, who said it would be “some time” before he got the video footage of the attacks “out of my mind”, sentenced the Wanneroo man to 11 months jail over the torture of a kangaroo at an unknown location in which Dempster punched the extremely distressed animal 11 times.
He received a six-month jail term for what Mr Benn described as “the appalling offence” of setting a chicken alight and discharging an explosive device under it nine seconds later.
“That’s a long time to be burning alive,” Mr Benn said after asking Dempster if he had stopped since to “count out the seconds”.
“I only hope the explosive... brought an end to its life and suffering.”
He also received five months jail for his role in actively encouraging the stabbing of a kangaroo 22 times by an associate some time between May 19 and June 16.
He was also the driver of a vehicle in which his passenger and co-accused fired a gel blaster gun at three people in Craigie in September.
He received two sentences of four months to be served concurrently for his role in the assaults, and two months jail for his part in a common assault in circumstances of aggravation, over an eight-year-old boy who was with his father when the latter was struck by projectiles in the chest and stomach.
Mr Benn said Dempster showed “no regard for people” in the gel blaster attacks on September 4 and had been “extremely fortunate” there was no serious injury to someone’s eye or face.
Dempster received a one-month jail term, to be served concurrently, for possessing knuckledusters.
Dempster will be eligible for parole after serving half his sentence.
The court heard the black eye that Dempster appeared with in court in September was inflicted by the bikie gang he was associating with as part of expulsion from the group.
His lawyer, who said his client had been under pressure to impress the gang, said he was no longer associated with the group.