The Sick Wife Defense Works Like a Charm for Cunning Patrick Doyle after He Traps a Cat and Then Shoots It with an Air Rifle While Still In Its Cage
"You don't understand he's been digging up my flowers."
-- Patrick Doyle
Nearly every bit as violently antagonistic toward cats as ornithologists and wildlife biologists, some gardeners likewise believe that they are justified in committing almost any crime in order to keep them out of their flowerbeds and vegetable patches. The patently criminal behavior of seventy-one-year-old Patrick Doyle of Fields Road in the village of Wootton in southwest Bedford, Bedfordshire, is a prime example of the extraordinary lengths that some of them are prepared to go in order to achieve their objectives. (See photo of him above with his face covered as he sneaks out of court.)
On June 16th of last year he baited a trap with fish and camouflaged it in his garden. Soon thereafter a forever nameless black unneutered tom with white markings on his front left paw and chest unsuspectingly stumbled into it.
The arch-criminal Doyle then shot the caged cat with an air rifle from a point-blank distance of two feet. More than likely he would have continued to bombard the defenseless animal with steel pellets until it finally died if his neighbor, Caroline Benbow-Hunt, had not courageously intervened.
That is exactly what amateur ornithologist Ernst Bernhard K. of München did to Rocco in December of 2010 once he had him at his mercy. The only difference being that he used pepper spray and water as opposed to an air rifle. (See Cat Defender post of January 19, 2011 entitled "Bird Lover in München Illegally Traps Rocco and Then Methodically Tortures Him to Death with Water and Pepper Spray over an Eleven-Day Period.")
"You don't understand he's been digging up my flowers," was the lame excuse that Dole gave Benbow-Hunt for his criminal behavior according to the February 5, 2012 edition of Bedfordshire on Sunday. (See "Old Age Pensioner Shot at Trapped Cat for 'Digging Up his Flowers'.")
At her insistence, Doyle carried the trap over to her yard where she foolishly opened it and allowed the wounded and frightened cat to escape. (See photo below of it in the trap.)
Since the expertise of a veterinary surgeon is required in order to remove an air gun pellet the only thing that Benbow-Hunt's precipitate action accomplished was to ensure the success of Doyle's murderous stratagem. Instead, she should have attempted to stop the cat from thrashing around in the cage by speaking softly to it as she rushed it to the nearest veterinary hospital.
As things turned out, the horribly abused cat never was seen again in the neighborhood and is presumed dead. His only chance would have been to make it home, if he had one, where emergency veterinary care hopefully would have been procured for him.
Otherwise, he was destined to die a prolonged and agonizing death. Even if the pellet somehow had miraculously missed his vital organs, he eventually could have either bled to death or been done in by its toxicity.
When the case finally came to trial on February 29th in Bedford Magistrates' Court, Doyle was let off with a twelve-week suspended sentence and court costs totaling £1,311.64. Just to demonstrate that they are a jolly old bunch of rotters with a wicked sense of humor, the magistrates banned him from owning any animals for five years and placed him under a 9 p.m. to 7 a.m. curfew for two months. It is preposterous to believe that those restrictions are going to do much in order to curb the wicked old goat's lust for feline blood in that he is highly unlikely to either want to acquire a cat anytime soon or to stay up much later than the chickens.
"This was a deliberate act of cruelty against an innocent animal and we are satisfied with the sentence handed out today," the RSPCA's Dave Braybrooke declared to the Daily Mail on March 1st. (See "Pensioner Trapped and Shot a Cat Because It Was Ruining His Flowers but Walks Free from Court.") "We hope that this case acts as a deterrent and sends a clear message that acts of cruelty like this will not be accepted and the RSPCA will investigate and prosecute offenders. It is shocking to think that someone deliberately set up a cat trap with the intention of snaring a cat and then shot at it."
Au contraire, heinous acts of this sort have become the order of the day all across England and it is precisely the courts' steadfast refusal to punish cat abusers and killers that is truly revolting. Just as importantly, as long as the RSPCA continues to applaud such lopsided miscarriages of justice villains like Doyle are destined to continue committing their dastardly deeds.
For example, the RSPCA's response was the same last October 26th when King's Lynn Magistrates' Court in Norfolk turned loose bird lover Eric Reeves after he, too, used an air rifle in order to kill Nicholas Townley's cat, Hartley. (See Cat Defender post of March 9, 2012 entitled "Amateur Ornithologist Guns Down Hartley with an Air Rifle, Feigns Remorse, and Then Cheats Justice by Begging and Lying.")
Obviously feeling their oats and enjoying themselves to the hilt, the magistrates tossed out the beau geste suggestion that Doyle's sentence would have been considerably more severe if they had been duly apprised of the extent of the cat's injuries. That is hardly likely even if it had been feasible given the fact that there is very little in the record to suggest that the RSPCA made any halfway serious attempt to track it down.
As best it could be determined, the only positive action entertained by the organization was to appeal to the public for information regarding the cat. (See Bedfordshire on Sunday, June 18, 2011, "RSPCA Appeal for the Owner of Missing Cat" and Bedford Times and Citizen, July 20, 2011, "Do You Know This Feline Gun Crime Victim?")
If the organization truly had cared one whit about saving its life it would have canvassed the neighborhood door-to-door for it and made doubly sure that it received the prompt emergency care that it required. Based upon it past record, however, the RSPCA is more accustomed to rounding up and killing cats than saving their lives. (See Cat Defender posts of June 5, 2007 and October 23, 2010 entitled, respectively, "RSPCA's Unlawful Seizure and Senseless Killing of Mork Leaves His Sister, Mindy, Brokenhearted and His Caretakers Devastated" and "RSPCA Steals and Executes Nightshift Who Was His Elderly Caretaker's Last Surviving Link to Her Dead Husband.")
Like Reeves, Doyle was astute enough to put a damper on his virulent hatred of cats, feign remorse, and to throw himself on the mercy of the court. "He is sorry," his shyster, Nicky Daily, told the judges according to the Daily Mail. "...this was a moment of foolishness borne out of frustration."
The facts do not, however, support such a cavalier twisting of the truth. On the contrary, Doyle's purchase of the trap at an antiques fair and his possession of an air rifle point to the inescapable conclusion that his trapping and shooting of the cat were premeditated. He even went so far as to admit to the RSPCA that the trap was to catch what he derogatively called vermin who were "mucking all over the garden."
Since air rifles historically have been the traditional weapons of juvenile miscreants, the only conceivable reason that an old fart like Doyle would have one in his possession would be to attack cats. He quite obviously does not use it for target practice because even Daily admits that his "sole pleasure" in life is gardening.
Instead of taking the law into his own hands, Doyle alternatively could have given the cat to an animal protection group but even that would not have guaranteed its safety. For instance, in 2010 real estate tycoon Mark Oberschmidt trapped at least two of his neighbors' cats and gave them to the Saginaw County Animal Care Center which in turn did his dirty work for him. (See Cat Defender post of August 19, 2010 entitled "Music Lessons and Buggsey Are Murdered by a Cat-Hating Gardener and an Extermination Factory Posing as an Animal Shelter in Saginaw.")
Another option would have been for him to have employed such common nonlethal deterrents as fences, organic matter, sprinklers, and ultrasound. As any fool knows, scaring off an unwanted cat is a rather simple task.
"It kills me that he had the audacity to shoot a little animal because it was in his yard," Susan McGee of Hampton, New Hampshire, said of Jeffrey Lee Eiras after he shotgunned to death her cat, Molly, in 2009. "All he had to do was stomp his foot and the cat would have run off." (See Cat Defender post of June 30, 2011 entitled "No Cat Is Safe Any Longer in New Hampshire Resort Town after a Local Court Sets Free Molly's Shotgun Murderer with a Trivial $200 Fine.")
Gardeners, ornithologists, and wildlife biologists have time and time again rejected all nonlethal methods of settling disputes involving cats. They accordingly should be recognized for the criminals that they are and suitably punished for their despicable crimes.
It additionally is a good bet that any halfway serious inquiry into Doyle's activities would reveal that he does not go berserk whenever a child, dog, bird, mouse, mole, snail, rabbit, squirrel, or other creature ventures into his garden. Since it is only cats that bring out his murderous tendencies, it is highly likely that he not only has maimed and killed numerous cats before but, more importantly, will do so again in the near future.
By comparison, gardeners in Deutschland are not permitted to harm roaming cats in any fashion and that includes setting out boards of nails. (See Cat Defender posts of August 26, 2010 and June 10, 2010 entitled, respectively, "In Stark Contrast to Ailurophobic America, Ziegelchen's Illegal Trapping by a Gardener in Altstädten-Burbach Is Roundly Condemned in Deutschland" and "Cat-Hating Gardener in Nordrhein-Westfalen Is Told by the Local Authorities to Remove a Board of Nails from His Yard.")
To top it all off, Doyle had the bloody cheek to beg the court for mercy on the grounds that he cares for his elderly wife. Even more outrageously, the judges went along with him.
As it might be recalled, Ernst Bernhard K. used the same defense in order to get away with his crimes. (See Cat Defender post August 17, 2011 entitled "Ernst K. Walks Away Smelling Like a Rose as Both the Prosecutor and Judge Turn His Trial for Killing Rocco into a Lovefest for a Sadistic Cat Killer.")
Along about the same time that Doyle was polishing off a keg of Guinness in celebration of the roaring success of his sick wife defense, fifty-five-year-old bird lover Clive Price of Exeter Street in Stafford, Staffordshire, was doing likewise and he had even more reason to be overjoyed. On May 18th of last year, he used an air rifle in order to shoot a cat out of a tree because it was chasing birds. Not contented with that bit of devilry, he immediately set upon it once it fell to the ground and either clubbed it to death or bashed its brains out against the side of a wall.
In addition to being charged with animal cruelty, police discovered a passel of illegal firearms at his residence. For example, the air rifle that he used in order to shoot the cat had a muzzle velocity above the legal limit and therefore required a permit.
He additionally was in the possession of a gun disguised as a walking stick that he admitted using in order to intimidate people as well as a handmade pistol with a silencer. He even had decorated the handlebars of his motorcycle to resemble revolvers. On the gun charges alone he could have been sentenced up to five years in the can.
Instead Judge Stephen Linehan of Crown Court in Stafford let him off with a one-year suspended sentence and three-hundred-hours of community service. For the far more serious crime of brutally killing the cat, Linehan gave him only an eighteen-week suspended sentence.
"In many respects you are a foolish man with an interest in firearms that a child or a teenager might exhibit," Linehan scolded him according to the account of the trial given in the February 27th edition of the Staffordshire Newsletter. (See "Gun Fanatic Spared Jail for Killing Cat.") "You better recognize...that you are going home now instead of prison. I suggest you rid yourself of anything that feeds that fascination -- empty shells or whatever."
Apparently Linehan could care less about how many cats this cowardly scumbag kills because there is absolutely nothing in the record to suggest that he even gave him so much as a good tongue-lashing for that. Instead, all of his sympathies were lavished on Price's disabled wife and elderly mother. (See the judge's smiling mug on the right above.)
Since Price is living on the dole after having been laid off from his job as a metalworker with J.C. Bamford Excavators of Rocester, the world's third largest construction, demolition, and agricultural concern, he no doubt has plenty of time left over after attending to the needs of his wife and mother, if they truly exist, in order to indulge himself in killing cats and, perhaps, individuals as well. So, in the end, Linehan has failed not only to protect cats but the general public as well by allowing Price to get away scot-free with his crimes.
Thanks to the slipshod reporting of the Staffordshire Newsletter, no additional information is available concerning the murder victim. The cat therefore could have been either someone's beloved companion or another friendless stray forgotten by an uncaring public.
Doyle, Ernst Bernhard K., and Price are identical peas shelled from the same perverted pod and for judges to allow them to escape justice just because they allegedly have ailing spouses is outrageous. It is totally inconceivable that jurists would give bank robbers, murderers, war criminals, or even petty thieves anywhere near that type of consideration.
Finally, it is nothing short of stupefying that any civilized society would permit the manufacture and sale of air guns in the first place. That is even more so the case in that they only are used in order to inflict punishment upon defenseless animals and, in rare cases, humans.
It is bad enough that they often are used as the weapons of choice by juveniles but it is far worse when mean-spirited and hate-filled old men like Reeves, Doyle, and Price appropriate them in order to kill cats. They most assuredly are old enough to have known better and the courts accordingly should have thrown the book at them.
Photos: Masons and Daily Mail (Doyle), Bedford Times and Citizen (caged cat), and St. Philips Barristers (Linehan).