A Camberley man, Alex Flint, was given a nine-week suspended sentence and a 12-month supervision order for using a hedgehog as a football in April 2011. The man was charged at Guildford Magistrates Court on the 3rd October 2011. Another pleaded not guilty and charges were dropped against him on the 24th October 2011.
Percy, the hedgehog suffered a horrific ordeal when he was used as a football by a group of adults early one morning outside the Arena Leisure Centre in Camberley. Percy was kicked by the men, had a concrete block dropped on him, then put in a bag and swung around and smashed on the ground.
Surrey Police were called to the incident at 3.30am on the 17th April 2011 after a member of the public telephoned them horrified at what was happening. The eyewitness was woken by the noise and called the police as the horrific attack unfolded. The healthy hedgehog had to undergo a life-saving operation and shattered shards of bones removed along with the removal of part of a hip joint.
Anne Brummer of Harper Asprey Wildlife Rescue said, "Fortunately Percy came straight to us within an hour of the attack and we were able to treat him and prevent him going further into shock. Officers Patrick Parker and Martyn Newitt from Surrey Police who brought Percy into us probably saved his life". She continued "When Percy arrived he was still tightly balled and in shock but as he relaxed we could see lesions and areas of swelling all over his body. The swelling continued in front of our eyes. This is one of the most horrific wildlife incidents we have seen in a long time".
RSPCA Inspector Derek Wilkinson was relentless in collecting all the statements and ensuring the prosecution got to court. The RSPCA have great expertise and success in this area and Percy will feature in their future publications.
Anne Brummer of Harper Asprey Wildlife Rescue said "Percy will be unable to return to the wild as he is unable to curl properly and this would prevent him finding food and make him vulnerable to predators that normally he would be safe from. If this hadn't happened he would have lived a long and happy life as he was clearly a strong and healthy hedgehog and only about three years old. Hedgehogs can live until they are 8 years old in the wild. The population has declined from 30 million to less than 1 million in under 40 years. It is sickening to see such a healthy hedgehog unable to return to the wild where he belongs. Since the attack, Percy has suffered slight brain damage and is just a little slower". She added "He will now be coming along to some of our wildlife talks but will spend most of his time in a protected, safe organic garden, with plenty of food and friends courtesy of a very special and caring man who is a great supporter of our work".
PERCY BEING RELEASED IN A SAFE AND SECURE HOME WITH ROCK LEGEND BRIAN MAY