Dunedin man sentenced to two and a half years in prison for stabbing miniature horse to death

A north Dunedin man has been sentenced to two years and six months in prison for the fatal stabbing of a miniature horse.

Reginald Ozanne stabbed Star the miniature horse 41 times in February last year - injuring his back, neck and throat in the seaside village of Waitaiti.

Star was rushed into a five-hour surgery but died as a result of his injuries.

Ozanne was handed down the sentence during his appearance in the Dunedin District Court on Friday afternoon, after pleading guilty to a charge of wilfully ill-treating an animal in March.

Reading a victim impact statement, Star's owner Mandy Mayhem-Bullock told the court the incident turned her world upside down.

"Again and again, in my mind, I replayed that gruesome scene in my head - of that repeated stabbing.

Star's injuries following the attack.
Star's injuries following the attack. Photo credit: Givealittle

"[It was] a crazy, evil act."

Police said Star's death was a "deplorable act".

"Star was loved by its owners and the Waitati community," said a police statement following Friday's sentencing.

"A number of staff from the Dunedin Criminal Investigation Branch were involved in the investigation and we'd like to acknowledge the high-calibre work of the skilled investigation team involved in this case.

"Police would also like to thank the community for their help throughout the investigation."