‘Utterly disgusting’ Shetland pony pervert jailed for four years

Alan Barnfield, 44, outside Sheffield Crown Court.
Alan Barnfield, 44, outside Sheffield Crown Court.

A man with a ‘utterly disgusting perversion’ who sexually assaulted a Shetland pony called Sky has been jailed for four years.

Alan Barnfield, aged 44, was found not guilty of having sexual intercourse with the horse by a jury, but was convicted of outraging public decency.

Judge Peter Kelson QC said the verdict meant the jury were sure a sexual assault on the pony had taken place, but could not be certain he had intercourse with her.

He said the pony had been badly traumatised by Barnfield’s assault, and had several injuries indicating she had been sexually assaulted.

The incident happened in the early hours of August 8, 2012, at Oak Tree Stables on Rakes Lane, Loversall, Doncaster.

Sentencing Barnfield, of Hexthorpe Lane, Doncaster, Judge Kelson said he had a ‘utterly disgusting perversion’.

He added: “What you did to Sky changed her personality completely and caused her extreme pain. Sky was traumatised, she is a living creature who you caused great pain to.

“There is no credit to you whatsoever. You lied through your teeth to the jury.”

A victim impact statement was read out in court from Jodie Walton, the owner of Sky, the Shetland pony involved in the incident.

Her statement said Sky’s behaviour changed after the assault and she would avoid the area where the attack happened, ‘shake and tremble’ and kick out at people.

Ms Walton eventually had to give Sky to a friend so the pony could ‘start afresh and get her confidence back’. She said giving Sky up had been ‘devastating’, especially for her young son.

Judge Kelson said: “The outrage to public decency is enormous.”