Target: Barry Hughes, Chief Crown Prosecutor, Somerset, U.K.
Goal: Seek the harshest possible punishment for teen found guilty of kicking, punching, and otherwise brutalizing cows at a dairy farm.
A teenager has pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to one or more cows after being caught on video performing some of the cruelest acts a local vet had ever seen. Owen Nichol, an apprentice stockman at a dairy farm, was filmed punching, kicking, and otherwise brutalizing animals at Pyrland Farm. This farm had an otherwise immaculate animal welfare record according to inspections, and Nichol was terminated immediately with the remaining staff undergoing a training workshop.
Nichol is seen on video punching calves, kicking cows in the face, and kicking calves to get them to move or stand up. The undercover video, taken by rights group Animal Equality, also showed the teen pulling on cows’ tails, pinning them to the ground, and beating them with metal gates. The teen also admitted to repeatedly punching and slapping nursing cows.
In court, the teen claimed that he was having a ‘bad week,’ as his grandmother was in the hospital and his girlfriend recently broke up with him. Animal welfare advocate Toni Shephard, executive director of Animal Equality U.K., took the stand to say that this is no excuse and that Nichol should be given the maximum possible penalty under the law, or 12 weeks of imprisonment. Sign the petition below to stand with Shephard in demanding a harsh penalty for this cruel abuser.
Dear Mr. Hughes,
Owen Nichol, a teen who worked at a dairy farm in Taunton, Somerset, was recently found guilty of animal abuse for beating and brutalizing cows. The teen was caught on tape punching, kicking, and beating cows with metal gates. He was also seen pulling the tails of the animals, pinning them to the ground, and shouting obscenities at them.
The teen claimed that he was having a rough week, but this is a poor excuse. Anyone who can commit such violence against an innocent animal could pose a threat to both animals and humans in the future. We, the undersigned, demand that this teen is given jail time as well as a full psychiatric evaluation and possible anger management classes in order to ensure that this doesn’t happen again.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Cindy Andrie