Page last updated at 13:34 GMT, Monday, 15 June 2009 14:34 UK

Three boys held over fawn killing

Dog walker Keith Arthurs
Eyewitness Keith Arthurs said the fawn looked about two days old

Three boys have been arrested in connection with the brutal killing of a newborn deer in Dorset parkland.

Three teenagers wearing hoods were seen attacking the fawn in Upton Country Park, near Poole, on Wednesday night.

According to an eyewitness, one boy hit the fawn across the head before the group dropped the animal on the ground and took turns stamping on it.

Two 17-year-old boys and a 15-year-old boy, all from Poole, have been arrested by Dorset Police.

Eyewitness Keith Arthurs said he did not intervene for fear of being attacked himself.

DNA offer

Dorset Police have received more than 100 calls in connection with the case.

Pc John Snellin, wildlife officer for the force, said they had never had such an "overwhelming" response to a case of this type.

The University of California in the US has offered to use DNA analysis to help catch those responsible.

The university's director of veterinary forensics, Beth Whitton, read about the attack on the BBC News website.

She said DNA found on the fawn could be matched with DNA on the clothes of those responsible.

Donors have offered a combined £2,000 reward in an effort to catch the animal's killers.

The fawn's carcass was collected by the RSPCA and taken to Lynwood Vets in Wareham.

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US DNA help to catch fawn killers
12 Jun 09 |  Dorset
Three youths stamp fawn to death
11 Jun 09 |  Dorset

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