Man left dogs to die in hot car

A security worker left two dogs to die in a hot car for more than two hours because neighbours complained about their loud barking.

Richard Armstrong, 47, left the pair of security dogs shut in the boot of his Vauxhall Astra estate on a hot April day when temperatures hit around 24C.

Passers-by saw the animals in the back of the vehicle in Ilford, east London, and called police who found one of the dogs dead in his kennel in the boot, while the second was collapsed but still breathing.

Hector and Yardie - both Belgian Malinois used for security work - were kept in the back of the vehicle with a fan running to try and keep them cool.

Armstrong told police he put them in the car because his neighbours in nearby Plaistow, east London, had been complaining about the noise of their barking.

The kennel was just about large enough for one dog to stand, but there was not room to turn or move around, the RSPCA said.

There was no evidence of any water in either kennel and Hector was found laying on his side with flies around his mouth with a strong smell of urine and faeces.

Female dog, Yardie, was rushed to a vets' for emergency surgery at the Ilford Pets at Home, but she later had to be put down.

Video footage showed Armstrong explaining to officers that the dogs had been in the back of his car in their crates with the boot door open and a fan running.

The self-employed security dog handler said he had complaints at home about their barking so left them in the car instead.

Police contacted the RSPCA and inspector Kate Ford went to the scene at the time of the discovery on April 20, 2029, to launch an investigation.

At Ilford Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday (August 11), Armstrong was found guilty of one count of causing unnecessary suffering to his two dogs by leaving them in a hot car following a trial.

He was sentenced to a 12-month community order with 120 hours of unpaid work and ordered to pay costs of £750 and a victim surcharge of £90.