Sheep farmers involved in shooting neighbour's pet dog spared jail sentence
Two sheep farmers involved in the killing of a pet dog have avoided prison.
Brian McEldowney and his nephew Gerald McEldowney were given suspended sentences at Derry Crown Court last week.
They dumped the dog's carcass in a field to give the impression that it had been legally shot dead for sheep worrying.
Judge Philip Babington said it was "with some considerable hesitation" that he had decided not to jail the defendants.
Brian McEldowney (56), from Five Mile Straight in Draperstown, admitted shooting the four-year-old border collie cross-beagle called Buster with his legally held shotgun.
He also admitted trespassing at a byre at Cloane Road, Draperstown, where he shot the dog, and possessing a shotgun and ammunition with intent to endanger life.
Gerald McEldowney (37) from Cloane Road admitted removing the dog's carcass to impede the apprehension of his uncle.
The dog was the family pet of the McGuigan family, who are neighbours of Gerald McEldowney.