15/08/2011 09:32 BST | Updated 15/10/2011 06:12 BST

Hamster Killer Spared Jail Sentence

PRESS ASSOCIATION -- A man who killed his ex-girlfriend's hamster by throwing it out of a window during a row has been given a suspended prison sentence.

Ryan Goodwin, 23, hurled the pet, Kaya, in its cage from the first-floor window of his council flat during a furious argument with Sarah Symons during their break-up.

Goodwin, who has a £70 per week cannabis habit and receives £800 a month in benefits, was sentenced at Plymouth Magistrates' Court after admitting animal cruelty and being found guilty at an earlier trial of using threatening behaviour during the row in January.

District Judge Paul Farmer also banned him from keeping animals for seven years, telling him: "If you had been sent to prison today you could have no complaint. What you did was disgraceful."

Miss Symons was talking to police on her mobile phone when the incident occurred, and her horror was captured by the police 999 recording.

Goodwin, of Ipswich Close, Plymouth, arrived at court with Miss Symons.

Judge Farmer was told they had since reconciled and were again living together.