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Stephen Smith admits shooting cat belonging to near neighbour in Thatcham

A MAN who was due to go on trial accused of shooting a near neighbour's cat has changed his plea.

Jurors were about to be sworn in at Reading Crown Court on Wednesday, January 17, after Stephen Smith initially denied the offence.

Reading Crown Court
Reading Crown Court

Specifically, the 53-year-old, of Rudland Close, Thatcham, is charged with causing £600.44 worth of criminal damage by shooting Harry, a cat belonging to Jeanette Drewitt, in Thatcham on January 17, 2021.

Mr Smith was further accused, on the same occasion, of possessing a firearm, namely an MB/20 black air rifle with camouflage trim, to which section 1 of the Firearms Act 1968 applied, without holding a firearm certificate in force at the time.

At Reading Magistrates’ Court in July 2022, he entered not guilty pleas to both charges and the case was sent to the crown court.

It was announced on Wednesday that Mr Smith was now pleading guilty.

The matter was adjourned until later this year for pre-sentence reports to be prepared.

Mr Smith was meanwhile granted unconditional bail.

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