Man given Essex’s first Criminal Behaviour Order for hare coursing
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A man has made subject of a Criminal Behaviour Order for hare coursing – a first for Essex Police – after we responded to reports in West Hanningfield.
Samuel Haylett, 30, of Barnes Road, Fimley, Camberley, was ordered to pay a £440 fine, £85 costs and a £44 victim surcharge at Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday 5 February, after admitting trespass in pursuit of game.
His CBO prohibits him from being in possession of a catapult, shot or an air weapon in a public place, bans him from being in the possession, control and company of any dog within Essex unless travelling to a pre-arranged emergency vet’s appointment, stop him from having a dog off a lead unless on private land or with the land owner’s consent and bans him from associating with three men in a public place.
At around 2pm on Sunday 13 October 2019, we received reports about hare coursing off Blind Lane.
An off-duty police officer was in the area and spotted Haylett, who was in possession of dogs who were in pursuit of a hare. This lasted around 30 seconds.
She then told Haylett to stop and put herself on duty before other officers arrived and arrested him.
We took photographs of Haylett covered in mud before we seized a car, mobile phones, catapults and stones.
Haylett was interviewed under caution before being reported for the offence.
Chief Inspector Terry Balding, head of Rural Engagement Team, said: “The quick-actions by members of the community and an off-duty officer, who has an extensive knowledge of wildlife and countryside pursuits, has resulted in a man receiving a conviction for hare coursing.
“The order, which is the first we have ever secured for hare coursing, will restrict his activities, his movements and his associates and will help protect rural communities countrywide.
“Hare coursing isn’t just an illegal and cruel activity, it causes disruption and damage to private land and crops, it can have a financial impact on businesses and it endangers the safety of people living and working in the area.
“We remain dedicated, along with our policing colleagues, in the combat of hare coursing and we will continue to track down and deal with offenders such as Haylett.”
Roger Hirst, Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex, said: “Tackling rural crime is an important priority in my Police and Crime Plan and it is great to see the Essex Police Rural Engagement Team taking such a proactive approach to protecting our rural communities.
“Hare coursing is a dangerous and frightening crime committed in isolated areas of our county.
“It can make our rural communities feel vulnerable in their own homes and this is totally unacceptable.
“Securing this order sends a clear message that rural crime is not acceptable, it will be tackled and those committing offences will be caught.”