Ruth is the human interest reporter and a photographer for the Bay of Plenty Times.

SPCA still seeks leads on teenage lamb-killer at Oropi School calf club day

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Ella Ensor's pet lamb died after being kicked by a boy at the Oropi School Calf Club. Photo/Andrew Warner
Ella Ensor's pet lamb died after being kicked by a boy at the Oropi School Calf Club. Photo/Andrew Warner

The hunt continues to find the young person responsible for kicking Crystal the lamb.

Owner Sarah Ensor said her 8-year-old daughter, Ella, saw a youth kicking the award-winning lamb on October 21 at the Oropi School Calf Club. Crystal had been tied to a fence and unable to escape.

The lamb died later that evening.

Tauranga SPCA animal welfare inspector Jason Blair said no new information had come to light on the award-winning lamb's death.

Mr Blair said the SPCA had received a report from someone at the fair who had seen a youth matching the description provided by Ella and her family, but had received no other leads on who the youth might be.

Mr Blair said between seven to 10 cases of welfare concerns in Tauranga were reported to the SPCA each week.

"Not all of the cases are ill treatment, but all are welfare concerns and require a follow-up from a SPCA inspector."

Mr Blair said the number was on par with the rest of New Zealand and representative of the population.

"We don't stand out as a cruel population. Nationally, there has been a slow increase over the years."

Ms Ensor said she wanted to sit down with the youth involved, with the SPCA and local police, so he would know how serious his actions were.

Crystal the lamb. PHOTO/SUPPLIED
Crystal the lamb. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

"Poor Ella, she's still so sad when people talk about her lamb. She has been quite quiet since it happened. There have been two other events she would have competed at since Crystal's death.

"It's so horrible. I can't believe it - it's not fair," she said.

Ms Ensor said the family buried Crystal at home last Friday and would plant a forest pansy on the site.

"The tree has deep red leaves which then turn black. Then once it's big enough we will hang black crystal in the tree. Crystal will always be remembered."

Oropi School principal Andrew King said the school had a few leads relating to Crystal's death but nothing solid to work with.

He said his staff and parents had gone through pictures of the day but no new information was found in them.

"The problem is, we don't have concrete info to work with. We have received some general information from someone, but it hasn't narrowed the search."

Mr King hoped the youth involved in the incident was not a local.

"It's sad that this happened, it's very unfortunate situation."

Mr King said there was not a lot the school could have done differently but it was waiting to hold a meeting with the calf club committee on the issue.

The Ensor family were appealing to the public for any information about the incident to be passed on to the Tauranga SPCA by calling (07) 578 0245.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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