A Derbyshire teenager who allegedly shot and killed a pet dog, claiming he thought it had been a fox, has denied the offence.
Benjamin Rowson Jones, aged 18, of Roes Court, Crich, Matlock, denied criminal damage when he appeared before Chesterfield Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, December 18.
It is alleged that Rowson Jones shot and killed the 18-month-old cocker spaniel, called Ruby, on a public footpath on September 18 this year.
He pleaded not guilty to one charge of criminal damage, in that he unlawfully killed the dog, belonging to Dominic Brown, on land off Sherwood Drive, Crich, Matlock.
According to media reports at the time, Ruby was taken to the vet following the shooting but later died.
The case caused uproar at the time, with Mr Brown taking to social media to describe the incident.
In a Facebook post, he wrote: “Broken heart doesn't cover what's happened this evening! Devastated I've lost my best friend Ruby.
"My brother was walking her down the public footpath next to my house in Sherwood Drive, Crich, at approximately 7pm this evening. She was being her usual self, sniffing around in the bushes.
"A young lad with a 410 shotgun and a black Labrador shot her dead claiming he mistook her for a fox.
"R.I.P I love you."
An appeal was subsequently launched and a man was interviewed by police, according to media reports.
Rowson Jones will next appear before Chesterfield Magistrates’ in March for his trial.