July 2023

Sick thug killed partner’s pet after months of sadistic torture

A sadistic thug spent months torturing his partner’s cat which included scalding her in the shower, punching and stamping on her and shooting her with a BB gun before eventually killing her.

Lewis Hudson appeared this morning, Wednesday, July 26 at Liverpool Crown Court regarding his prolonged and sickening torture of his then partner’s pet cat.

The court heard Hudson, 23, began a relationship with Summer Leadbetter in early 2021 and moved into a flat at Hollins Court, Prescot, in August of the same year.

Summer told Hudson she wanted a pet cat and after some persuasion the pair got one called Binx.

However, over the coming months she noticed several injuries on the cat that the defendant initially put down to injuries and infections. But Tom Challinor, prosecuting, told the court Hudson started openly abusing the cat.

The defendant initially punched the cat because it had allegedly scratched the furniture. He also put the cat in the bathroom and left it in the shower with the water running for long periods of time.

When Summer opened the bathroom door on one occasion, the room was full of steam. The cat was crying and panting and its skin was hot to the touch.

In June of last year, Summer was watching funny cat videos on her phone when Hudson told her he had a funny video to show her.

Mr Challinor told the court he showed her a video of him stamping on the cat in steel toe cap boots.

The cat was screaming and Hudson told her he would continue to do so if she did not do as she was told.

The court heard Hudson would also shoot the cat with pellets from his BB gun. He even soaked them in cleaning fluids before firing them – and also hit Binx with a mop soaked in bleach “in the hope it would kill her”.

Summer tried to make arrangements for the cat to be rehomed but Hudson refused because he feared the injuries would be traced back to him and he wanted a dog.

The court heard this prolonged torture of Binx continued for around eight months until August last year.

The defendant was at their shared flat and texted Summer, who was out with her mum, to come back with food or he was “going to f*** the cat”.

Hudson told his then partner that the cat was “going to get it” and he was “going to whack her with this shovel”.

He then told her “if you don’t get home now I am going to kill it”.

He finished by telling Summer “everyone in your family thinks I am a soft c*** because I am polite and quiet to them. I’ll f****** show them the real me if they want.”

Summer rushed back to her home but found the cat lying motionless. Mr Challinor said the cat’s fur was matted with blood where it had been hit with the shower head.

The defenceless animal’s fangs had been cleanly hit out of her mouth due to the force. Summer passed out when she saw the cat’s injuries while her mum called the police.

Hudson was arrested at the scene. When questioned by the police, Hudson claimed he “was all talk” and had kicked the cat away from him causing it to hit the TV stand.

When Binx’s body was examined at The University of Liverpool, it was revealed her body was covered with abrasions and bruises. Her ribs were fractured and her lung was punctured, which was confirmed to be the cause of death. Mr Challinor said the cat had “suffered extensively”.

Mr Challinor also read out a victim impact statement on behalf of Summer. He said: “She has been struggling to sleep and was scared to close her eyes because all she could see was Hudson hitting Binx.”

Summer’s mum had contacted the crisis team because of concerns for her daughter’s mental health.

Summer was forced to leave her job as a nursery worker, had been prescribed antidepressants and struggled to function due to fears she would “bump into the defendant”. She said she doubted she would ever own another pet.

Honour Judge Brian Cummings KC disagreed and called the criminality “a sickening catalogue of cruelty to a defenceless animal”. He noted the totality of the offending and the prolonged and “sadistic” nature of the torture. In mitigation he took into account Hudson’s guilty pleas to two counts of animal cruelty and one of harassment relating to the text messages to Summer.

Judge Cummings jailed Hudson for two years and three months.

He also imposed a restraining order that stops him contacting Summer for 10 years, as well as disqualifying him from keeping any animal for life.

When Hudson was jailed, Summer, who was supported by a number of her family in court, hugged her mum while the others celebrated.