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Student, 21, was so drunk he told police his name was '1, 2, 3, 4' when they found him frying his friend's hamsterJames White admitted causing unnecessary suffering to flatmate's pet
Dead hamster found in frying pan at student accommodation in YorkStudents complained when they smelt a 'pungent aroma'
White was found collapsed on the floor when police arrived at the sceneTold police officers: 'I f****** fried it' when they discovered the animal
13:44 GMT, 7 March 2013
10:24 GMT, 8 March 2013
A student who fried his flatmate's hamster has been ordered to do 120 hours of unpaid of work in the community.
James White, 21, admitted causing unnecessary suffering to the female Syrian hamster after a court accepted it could not be established whether the animal was alive when it went into the pan.
District Judge Roy Anderson told White he was sentencing him on the basis the rodent died minutes before, when the defendant was handling it.
James White said: 'I f****** fried it, I fried it,' when police asked him what he had done to the defenceless creature
Selby magistrates' court heard the animal was found in a frying pan next to a heated hob in the communal student accommodation at Popehead Court, York, where White lives.
Police were called to the flat in the early hours of the morning after complaints by other residents OF A 'PUNGENT AROMA'.
Phil Brown said White, a Politics and International Relations student,
was found 'significantly in drink, collapsed on the floor' and refused
treatment by paramedics.
After coaxing White's flat number out of him, the officers found the relevant flat, where the door was left wide open.
Suffering: James White, 21, admitted causing unnecessary suffering to the female Syrian hamster
Mr Brown said: 'There was a significant and pungent smell coming from the kitchen. He found the hob on full, a frying pan was next to the hob with the hamster in.'
He told the police his name was '1, 2, 3, 4' when asked for it, The Sun reported.
When asked what had happened to the hamster, he said: 'I f****** fried it, I fried it,' the court heard. Following
a psychiatric assessment which ruled he was fit for police interview,
White claimed 'he had no recollection of the facts'.
The court heard that the animal belonged to White's flatmate, who he continues to live with. Kevin Blount, defending, said: 'There was no deliberate attempt to kill the animal.'
Expert witnesses, Professor Lorenzo
Resell for the prosecution, and Ranald Munro, for the defence, agreed
that they could not be sure whether or not the hamster died in the
frying pan, or just minutes before by 'rough handling'.
White was ordered to do 120 unpaid work, and was banned from keeping any animals for eight years.
Sentencing White, District Judge Roy
Anderson, said: 'I have no doubt that in the normal course of your life
you are a hard working young man trying to get yourself a degree and
make a career for yourself.
'You consumed far too much alcohol than was good for you.
'I hope from that you have calmed your drinking habits and will not get involved in that sort of binge as you did that night. You have destroyed your good character and got a criminal conviction.
'It was rough handling of that animal
by you but it can not be established if putting it into the pan in
appalling heat that killed it.'
White was made subject to a 12-month
probationary supervision order and was also ordered to pay 1000 towards
Scene: Police found the dead animal (pictured) at the flat he shared in York. Mr White was drunk when officer arrived at the scene