PC jailed for dog cruelty

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The Independent Online
A FORMER police dog trainer convicted of animal cruelty was jailed yesterday for three months.

Kenneth Boorman, a 46-year-old former police constable, was convicted of six cruelty charges by a magistrate sitting in Chelmsford, Essex, last November.

The magistrate heard that Boorman, who had been a dog trainer at the Essex Police Dog Section headquarters in Sandon, ordered handlers to chastise dogs by hanging them over fences and kicking them.

One dog, called Acer, died after being hung and kicked by his handler on Boorman's instructions.

The magistrate imposed a four-month jail sentence on Boorman, who has two children, but released him on bail pending appeal.

Judge Michael Yelton, sitting at Chelmsford Crown Court, reduced Boorman's sentence from four months to three months yesterday. But he said the offences of which Boorman was convicted were so serious that only a custodial sentence was appropriate.

A second former officer also convicted of cruelty towards animals by the magistrate in Chelmsford last November, succeeded in an appeal against his jail sentence.

Andrew White, 38, a former sergeant who was head of training at the Dog Section headquarters, was also given a four-month jail term after being convicted of seven cruelty charges.

But yesterday the judge reduced that sentence to a 28-day jail term, suspended for a year.

The judge said White, who had also been freed on bail pending appeal, was not personally present when dogs were mistreated, although he approved the method of chastisement ordered by Boorman.

Both White and Boorman were dismissed from Essex Police two months ago.

Lawyers for the two men said they were now both suffering from depression, were unemployed, had suffered public ignominy and vilification, and were unemployable.

Judge Yelton rejected White's appeal against conviction. He broke down in tears when the judge said he would not be going to prison.

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