Disgraced teacher charged with animal cruelty over video of horse being punched and kicked

26 January 2022, 06:32 | Updated: 26 January 2022, 07:17

The shocking footage caused outrage online.
The shocking footage caused outrage online. Picture: Hertfordshire Hunt Saboteurs

By Megan Hinton

A woman has been charged with two counts of animal cruelty by the RSPCA after shocking footage appeared to show her punching and kicking a horse.

Sarah Moulds, 37, was fired from her position as a primary school teacher at the Mowbray Education Trust in Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, last month after footage was shared online showing her repeatedly slapping the animal when it ran into the road.

The RSPCA has since confirmed a prosecution case has been brought against the former teacher for her treatment of a grey pony named Bruce, under the Animal Welfare Act.

The charity will allege the 37-year-old woman caused "unnecessary suffering" to Bruce by "kicking and hitting" him, and for not taking reasonable steps to "protect the animal from pain, suffering, injury or disease".

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Both of the alleged offences against the Bruce the pony occurred on November 6, 2021, in the vicinity of 'The Drift' Gunby, Lincolnshire.

She is due to appear in Boston Magistrates' Court on Monday.

At the time Ms Moulds had been participating in The Cottesmore Hunt - one of Britain's oldest foxhound packs.

The video which the RSPCA described it as "really upsetting" was taken by anti-hunting activists called the Hertfordshire Hunt Saboteurs.

It shows a woman dressed in riding gear hitting out at the animal before putting it in a horsebox.

The woman appears to be violent with the horse after it cantered into a road.

Moulds was also removed from a voluntary position at her local branch at the pony club, while the Cottesmore Hunt said they did not condone what happened "under any circumstances" adding "thorough internal investigation" had meant a "follower will not participate in trail hunting" with them.