Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Rotherham rabbit death arson charge pair in court

Sheffield Magistrates' Court Image copyright Chris Downer/Geograph
Image caption James Penistone, 38, and two 15-year-old boys appeared at Sheffield Magistrates Court

A man and a teenager have appeared in court charged with an arson attack that killed 59 rabbits.

James Penistone, 38, and a 15-year-old boy, who cannot be named because of his age, are said to have set fire to an allotment in Rotherham in September resulting in the death of the animals.

Mr Penistone and the boy appeared at Sheffield Magistrates Court to deny the offence and three further charges.

They were bailed to appear at Sheffield Crown Court on 4 April.

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Mr Penistone, of Aston, in Rotherham, and the teenager also denied charges of threatening a witness, affray and threatening to damage or destroy property.

A second 15-year-old, who also cannot be named, appeared at the same court to deny a charge of affray. He was also bailed to appear at Sheffield Crown Court on 4 April.

The offences are said to have taken place on 26 September.

The alleged arson attack also caused damage to animal sheds, a stable, tools and leisure equipment worth £5,000.

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