Farmer Will Griffin in the field where the incident is alleged to have taken place
A female jogger witnessed the shocking incident, which happened last month on Sunday, August 13, between 7am and 8am in a field off Hambleton Hill at Rutland Water.
The farmer, Will Griffin, who owned the sheep in the field, has now spoken out after the distressing incident.
Mr Griffin, who runs JH Griffin and Sons’ Home Farm in Main Street, Egleton with his father, John, said the jogger alerted police.
He said: “These three guys chased the sheep round and round the field until they ran it over and shut it in the car. When a lady jogger ran past she saw the sheep covered in blood and asked what they were doing? They said: ‘we are going to take it home’ - they were actually gloating.”
“I have heard this sort of thing happen before from other farmers.
“You are not going to stop it, it isn’t an isolated thing you are going to stop if they are commercially motivated there is nothing you can do.”
He called on people to report anything suspicious to police, adding: “I hope the public are aware and are extra vigilant. If they see anything they should contact the Anglian Water [company responsible for Rutland Water] wardens or the police immediately.”
The jogger saw the men leave the scene in a white car with the animal in the boot.
The car was later found abandoned and the lamb had to be put down after suffering broken ribs, wounds to its head, ruptured intestines and having its back hooves sheared off.
Police said they responded to a call made by a member of the public on Sunday, August 13, at 8.30am, who said they saw men trying to harm livestock on the Hambleton footpath in Rutland.
Officers were deployed and the police helicopter assisted in a search for the vehicle, which was located at 9.30am just off Florence Wragg Way in Oadby, Leicester.
Police confirmed the injured sheep was found in the boot of the car.
Two men, aged 19 and 28, were arrested in connection with the incident, while a third man was arrested for obstructing a police officer.
All three have been released pending further inquiries.
If you have any information about the incident call police on 101, quoting incident number 250 of August 15.