We looked last month at the case of Alan Blackman, the 31 year old removal man from Norfolk, who pleaded guilty to one offence of attempted sexual intercourse with an animal (contrary to s69 Sexual Offences Act 2003) and one of trespass with intent to commit that offence (contrary to s63 Sexual Offences Act 2003).
The motivation behind the attack is unexplained. Mr Blackman stated that he had no memory of the attack due to the fact that he had been “high on cocaine and amphetamines … He had also consumed large amounts of alcohol.”
The attack lasted an hour, during which Mr Blackman fetched some “containers to stand on in an attempt to have full sex with the animal.” He also videos the act.
The horse sustained some injuries, but these haven’t been specified. We are told that it “was not only distressing for the horse, but for the owners too“.
For the reasons that we said last time, the effective maximum sentence was two years. The Court had adjourned for a psychiatric report, and it would not have been a surprise if some form of psychiatric disposal would have been the outcome.
But it was not to be – Mr Blackman got 14 months imprisonment. It looks like he got full credit for his plea of guilty (although he was pretty much ‘bang to rights’ so the Judge could have given him more).
This is a starting point of 21 months, which is quite near the top of what he could get. There are no guidelines for this offence (it’s pretty rare).
It’s hard to argue with the sentence on the face of it, although we would expect an appeal on the basis that the sentence was too high and/or should have been suspended with some form of mental health treatment.
Also, it could be that sentences towards the top of the range would be reserved for cases where there is repeated conduct with the same animal, although given the horse was injured that’s probably not an argument that will go too far.
We shall keep an eye on the appeal reports and see …