Butcher spared jail term

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A FORMER butcher who killed his girlfriend’s horse while suffering with a dellusion that it would harm her has escaped a jail sentence.

Richard Jones left three-year-old mare Arwen to bleed to death from a six-inch wound to its throat, after the attack at Gunnells Fold Farm on Arbour Lane, Standish.

He was sectioned after last November’s killing, and spent three months in a mental health unit.

But a judge ruled he is no longer delusional when he appeared in court to admit animal cruelty.

District Judge Wendy Lloyd described the act as a brutal one, but conceded he did not intend to inflict pain. She said it was a product of a state of mind.

The judge added: “You are a different man to the one that did that dreadful deed. You are rational, an animal lover who was delusional.”

She gave him a conditional discharge at Wigan and Leigh Magistrates’ Court.

Jones, 30, from Preston, was banned for 10 years from keeping animals except dogs.

Jones and the girlfriend, who found her horse dead, have since split.