In the Media

Yobs admit throwing cat repeatedly from tower block balcony

PUBLISHED July 3, 2006

Four teenagers have pleaded guilty to animal cruelty offences after a pet cat was filmed on a mobile phone being repeatedly thrown from a tower block.

Birmingham Magistrates' Court was told that the youngsters were arrested after "sickening" footage was found on a schoolboy's phone showing the animal being hurled from a fifth-floor balcony. The domestic pet - which had been captured to provide "entertainment" - had to be put down after being thrown from the balcony at least four times.

Nick Sutton, prosecuting for the RSPCA, told the court that the 20-minute reign of terror, which happened last October, "beggared belief".

Before the court were 18-year-old Christopher Lees, a 17-year-old boy and two girls aged 16 and 14, who cannot be named for legal reasons.

Two video clips were played to the court. During the first clip Lees jovially told the others present: "That just thudded off the floor - that cat's definitely got a few broken bones."

On the second clip - which revealed that a second phone was being used to record the events - Lees could be heard telling a girl seen dropping the cat: "Go on then."

Lees, clearly enjoying himself as the cat falls, then added: "The cat's going off the balcony. Bye, Bye catty."

The animal could be seen to land on a tarmac drive before limping away as Lees commented: "Ooh! What the f***! That cat is a soldier. That's the fourth time."

The three older defendants all admitted cruelly ill-treating and terrifying the ginger-and-white pet, which was thrown from a tower block in the Druids Heath area last October. The 14-year-old, who appeared in court wearing flip-flops and no socks, pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting the cruelty.

Magistrates remitted the three juvenile defendants to Birmingham Youth Court to be dealt with next Tuesday. Lees, who was warned that he could face a jail sentence, will be sentenced on July 14. All four defendants were granted unconditional bail.