Boys 'kill fish with lit cigarette' in 'barbaric' incident at Sutton Lawn

A ‘barbaric incident’ in which two boys ‘stabbed a fish with a lit cigarette and photographed its death’ at a Sutton beauty spot has prompted an appeal for witnesses.

Friday, 4th June 2021, 1:37 pm

The sickening attack happened at the pond on Sutton Lawn, between 1-1.30pm, on Bank Holiday Monday and was witnessed by a shocked passerby who contacted Ashfield district councillor David Hennigan.

He reported the gruesome incident to police and revealed how the fish was caught by the boys and then placed on a rock.

A lit cigarette was then placed in the fish’s mouth before being stabbed with it. It was photographed as it died and thrown back into the pond.

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Sutton Lawn, where the fish was attacked

Coun Hennigan, who represents Sutton Central and New Cross, has described the attack as ‘barbaric and abhorrent’ and is now appealing for witnesses.

He said: “It is abhorrent and frankly a massive concern that anybody is willing to inflict this on a fish.

"The lads took photos of the fish as it lay dying. I would like to see these sick individuals caught and for them to pay the consequences. Sutton Lawn was extremely busy on Monday – so there must be more witnesses.

"This barbaric killing of a mature fish is extremely sinister and I appeal to park users to help us catch the culprits.”

It is not the first time animals have been targeted at the beauty spot.

In April last year, a swan’s nest was set on fire by yobs – which led to Ashfield District Council protecting the area with fencing

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Coun Hennigan said: “Sutton Lawn is an amazing place – leisure grounds used for people of all ages. Unfortunately, some individuals let us down.

"I am in regular touch with Ashfield Police Chief Inspector Mark Dickson and our council’s community protection team to increase patrols at the Lawn including the pond and tennis courts.

"I must make it clear, Sutton Lawn is an extremely safe and popular place to be. We are occasionally let down by idiots and that’s why in the case of this fish, we need to investigate.”

Inspector Mark Dickson, district commander for Ashfield, said he and officers are ‘appalled’ by the crime and want anyone with information to contact police immediately.

He said: “We have been made aware of this incident and would like to speak to anyone who may have additional information about what happened. We are also appalled by this report and are keen to track down the individuals involved.

"As the summer goes on we’ll be maintaining a regular presence at Sutton Lawn and other parks in the district to deter anti-social behaviour and ensure that all our open spaces remain a pleasant and welcoming environment for everyone.

"So if you do have concerns please contact us by calling 101, visiting our social media pages, or speaking to an officer when you see them.”

Anyone with information about the incident or may have witnessed it, should contact Nottinghamshire Police on the non-emergency 101 number, quoting reference 298 – 030621.

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