Woman who dumped cat into garbage can is fined

Mary "It's just a cat" Bale who was caught on video dropping a cat into a trash bin received her punishment today in court: a £250 fine. From The Guardian:

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Bale, who appeared close to tears in court and admitted a charge of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal, was spared the maximum penalty of six months in prison or a £20,000 fine as the district judge Caroline Goulborn acknowledged the "vilification" she had suffered.

The judge also accepted that Bale was in a "stressful situation" at the time, but said that was "no excuse for what you did".

"It clearly was an irrational and impulsive act that you could not explain and in interview you said that you were mortified. I accept that your remorse is genuine," the judge said. "The media interest in this case has resulted in you being vilified in some quarters and I have taken that into account also."

Bale was fined £250 but was also ordered to pay a victim surcharge and costs, a total of £1,436.04. The RSPCA called it "a very fair decision".

Banned from keeping or owning animals for the next five years, Bale may find her infamy takes as long to fade. After a period signed off work for depression, she has now resigned from her job, unable to face her colleagues again.

"Cat bin woman Mary Bale fined £250"