A teenage girl who threw a cat from the fifth floor of a city tower block in a sickening act of cruelty was yesterday sentenced to a four-month detention and training order.
The 16-year-old and three friends filmed themselves on mobile phones torturing the animal for their own entertainment, by flinging it four times from a balcony.
The cat, which could clearly be seen trying to claw on to the building during the footage, was so badly injured it later had to be put down.
In passing sentence at Birmingham youth court chair-woman of the bench Mrs Pamela Holt said: "This was an act of wanton cruelty committed against a trotally defenceless cat.
"You were part of a group that hurled the young cat not once but four times from the fifth floor balcony.
"It is almost beyond belief that the terrified young cat was taken back to the balcony on three occasions and subjected to further fear and injury.
"The lack of compassion and concern for domestic animals raises the gravest of concerns about your behaviour.
"This court must reflect its disdain for such behaviour, especially when it is committed for amusement and entertainment."
The teenager, from Alum Rock, who had previously admitted a charge of animal cruelty, was also banned from keeping any animal for ten years.
A 14-year-old, from Druids Heath, who had previously pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting the cruelty, was sentenced to a 12 month referral order, banned from keeping any animal for five years and ordered to pay £100 costs.
As reported in the Birmingham Post last month, friend Christopher Lees, 18, of Wils-ford Close, Druids Heath, was sentenced to four months in a young offenders institution and was given a five-year animal ban by City magistrates after also admitting animal cruelty.
The youth court magistrates adjourned sentence on a fourth defendant, a 17-year-old boy, from Druids Heath, who had pleaded guilty to the same charge until September 19. Nick Sutton, prosecuting, said the owner of the ginger and white male cat, called Kharlo, had become concerned when the animal failed to return home.
He said she was told by a group of youths that something had happened to Kharlo and was shown the cat which had been put in a hooded top and was crying out continually in pain.
Mr Sutton said she thought it may have been struck by a car and took it to a vet who discovered it had brain damage.
What really happened, he said, was revealed when video clips were sent to other teen-agers' mobile phones in the area and complaints then flooded in to the RSPCA.
He said Lees could be heard making a commentary on the clips and that the terrified animal could be seen trying to hang on to the balcony of a block in Druids Heath before it was hurled off.
Mr Sutton said: "What was going on on that occasion was entertainment.
"They were enjoying themselves.
"The suffering that animal went through can barely be imagined. It is simply evil."
Alan Davenport, representing the 16-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said she had only thrown Kharlo off once.
He said it was an appalling act but the girl had underlying issues that needed to be addressed, probably by the medical profession.