Derby

Derbyshire farm's tortured chickens 'kicked like footballs'

David Taylor
Image caption David Taylor is worried about future thefts at the farm

Two chickens were tortured and killed after being stolen from a community farm in Derbyshire which has been hit by a series of animal killings.

People living near Willow Tree Family Farm, in Shirebrook, said the chickens were kicked around the town like footballs then thrown in a pond.

Police increased patrols around the farm after two rabbits and a goose were brutally killed there in 2010.

They are now trying to find the people responsible for the latest killings.

David Taylor from the farm said: "We had a lot of things planned for this year but if things are going to happen like this what else is going to happen next?

"If we get something else on site what else is going to go missing? What else are they going to take?"

'Just unforgivable'

On 13 December 2010 the farm's owners found a decapitated goose.

Two rabbits were killed at the farm later the same week. One had been decapitated and the other appeared to have been stamped on.

The latest killings were reported to police on 6 January.

Councillor Marion Stockdale, who represents Shirebrook and Pleasley for Derbyshire County Council, said: "It's deplorable. It doesn't matter what sort of creature it is. For them to be tortured and victimised that way, I find it's just unforgivable."

Willow Tree Family Farm is managed by volunteers from the local area.

It also supports disadvantaged adults and children by giving them the chance to help at the farm and gain skills.

One of the farm's aims is to support community regeneration, but staff and volunteers are worried the killings give the area a bad name.

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