Two men who killed a pet lizard in a “chillingly evil” act could be brought back to court after one lied about his job to get a softer sentence.
Daniel Innes, 20, and Jordan McIsaac, 18, trashed an Aberchirder home during a house party last year and in the process killed a family’s beloved geckos.
One lizard was dropped on the floor and the other was stuffed into a blender.
Owner Amanda Bibby wanted the pair to be locked up – but a sheriff instead gave them three months to prove they can stay out of trouble and suggested they show their remorse by volunteering with animal welfare charities.
He also put the two under a curfew, but relaxed the times of 7pm-7am to 10pm-5am after hearing McIsaac had an early start for his landscape gardening job.
Now it has emerged the teen has not worked for Portsoy-based Turfleys Scotland since last year – prompting calls for him to be sent back to Banff Sheriff Court to be dealt with now.
A spokesman for Turfleys Scotland said McIsaac had only ever been hired on a “very part-time basis” and added: “After his recent behaviour he will never work for us again.”
McIsaac, of Mid Street, Cornhill, has since claimed he “forgot” to tell the sheriff he had lost the gardening job and was working casually for his granddad as a painter and decorator.
The Crown Office has confirmed it is now “considering” whether to bring the pair back to court, though could not comment further.
Ms Bibby – who said she felt “let down” at the sheriff’s decision on Tuesday – said McIsaac and Innes, of Brands Butt, Inverurie, should be called back to court immediately.
“This is how killers start, the manner in which the geckos were killed is just beyond sick,” the mother-of-two said.
“I feel like the sheriff has his head in the clouds. He said they were evil and then he gave no punishment. I tried to have some faith in the justice system, but it has failed me.”
The 33-year-old added: “He should have told the sheriff the truth. He didn’t, so the circumstances have changed. I shouldn’t have to wait three months to see him in court – he must be pulled back now.
“Though I’m angry, I’m a little happy as he might go to jail. The sheriff didn’t take it seriously last time. Now he knows Jordan lied he might take action”.
Animal charities have also criticised the court’s leniency, and in an exclusive interview in today’s YL ruled out allowing the pair to get involved.
Mike Flynn, the Scottish SPCA’s chief superintendent, said: “Due to the horrific nature of their crime, it would not be appropriate for them to volunteer with the society.”
And Keith Marley, owner of the New Arc in Ellon, which cares for injured animals across Aberdeenshire, added: “The same goes here – I wouldn’t let them near the place.
“I don’t see how they can’t get a custodial sentence. We’re not talking about children here, who can be educated about taking care of animals.
“These are grown men who know right from wrong. No sane rescue centre will take them on, you’d have to be watching them all the time.”
On Tuesday, Sheriff Mann warned Innes and McIsaac to not “muck about” with their situation.
“This is a very serious offence,” he said.
“There will be lots of people wanting me to send you to custody.”
They are scheduled to appear for sentencing on October 17.