Derbyshire man kicked dog in head as children looked on in park, court hears

A north Derbyshire former army dog handler was seen kicking his border collie to the head when the unruly pooch ran off to play with children scooting at a skatepark.

By Ben McVay
Wednesday, 2nd February 2022, 12:34 pm

Peter Densley’s border collie Meg “yelped” in pain and lay on the floor following the nasty blow before he picked the pooch up by her fur and carried her away, magistrates heard.

Video footage showing the incident unfold - which was widely shared on social media at the time of the offence on June 22 - was played at Chesterfield Magistrates Court.

It showed the playful hound appear at the bottom of a skate ramp at Scanderlands Playing Fields, Blackwell, as giggling teens watched - with Densley walking across the nearby field towards the boys while shouting.

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Scanderlands Playing Fields, where the incident unfolded. Photo of Collie dog illustrative only.

An RSPCA inspector who viewed it said the kick to the young dog’s head, neck and shoulder area resembled the movements of a “footballer”.

While a vet, after viewing the video, said the force of the kick could have caused a “skull fracture” and a “bleed on the brain”.

The court heard Meg was “fascinated” by scooter wheels - something which Densley was trying to discourage with training.

Densely, 66, had asked the teenagers to “stand still” and allow him to collect his pet, however when he had no response he “lost his temper and kicked the dog”.

Becky Allsop, prosecuting, told how as Densely appeared he was heard shouting “if you don’t stop I’ll kick your head in as well”.

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She said: “He kicked the dog hard as if kicking a football and the dog made a sound as if in pain.”

The court heard an onlooker described hearing Mr Densley say “I’ll have you next” to the youths.

Densley’s solicitor Katie Hempstock said her client - who owned five dogs - had spoken to the boys at the park “on a number of occasions”, asking them “not to “engage” with the dog.

She said: “The children carried on doing what Mr Densley has asked them not to do.

“He has lashed out in frustration - he knows it would have caused pain to Meg and nothing can make him feel worse about that than he himself.

“The video was published on the internet and has received some commentary from members of the public.”

Ms Hempstock added that no evidence has been found of any physical injuries to the dog and Densley’s own vet had provided a statement that his dogs were “loved and looked after”.

The solicitor said Densley’s wife had died of a brain tumour last year, adding: “I’m afraid to say it has had a significant impact upon him.

“When his wife passed away, that really cut him deeply.”

Densley, of Alfreton Road, Blackwell, admitted causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal.

He was handed a 12-month community order with 140 hours unpaid work and the dog Meg was confiscated from his care permanently.

The defendant was also made to pay £1,837 to Derbyshire Police covering the costs of kenneling the dog when she was removed, £85 court costs and a £95 victim surcharge.

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