Man sentenced for sex act on horse at Devon stables

A man was caught on a covert infra-red camera performing a sex act on a horse at a stable in Devon.

Derek Woods was caught when he triggered alarms at the stable which had been set up by police after they were alerted by the animal's owner.

Woods, 26 and originally from Glasgow, admitted charges of animal cruelty and one of committing a sex act on a horse.

Sentencing him to a supervision order, the judge said Woods had acted in a deviant and depraved way.

Police were first alerted by the horse's owner in December 2009 when she found Woods asleep in a barn.

'Isolated' man

Fake CCTV cameras and a loud alarm were installed in an attempt to keep him away but they were unsuccessful and the owner noticed injuries to the horse in February 2010.

Det Con Darren Campbell said covert surveillance was then used.

"The alarm sensors were taken apart, camouflaged and fixed to the stable door and a tiny covert camera and infra-red lamp set up inside with the recording equipment hidden in a nearby tack room," he said.

Woods, of Alphington Road, Exeter, was caught in August 2010 when he activated the alarm and camera.

Defence counsel Nigel Wraith said: "Woods is unable or unwilling to talk about the reasons behind his offending, it is difficult for anybody to fathom out what the reasons would be.

"He feels complete and utter shame at the position he finds himself in and is embarrassed beyond words."

His barrister described him as an "isolated" man with a drink problem.

In addition to the 24-month supervision order, Woods was ordered to undergo treatment for alcohol dependency.

He was also banned from going within a one-mile radius of the horse owner's stables and fields.

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