A vehicle entered a field in north Dorset on Sunday (July 17) and deliberately ran over sheep, killing 14 altogether, Dorset Police Rural Crime Team has said.

Some sheep - it is unclear if they were part of the 14 or separate - had "horrific injuries" and had to be shot, due to their broken legs, police added.

The incident occurred in the area of Tollard Royal between 7:00a.m and 6:15a.m.

PC Sebastian Haggett from the Dorset Police Rural Crime Team has said that investigations into the incident are underway and that police are appealing for anybody with information to come forward.

"This is an appalling attack against a hard working farming community and against livestock. We will step up our patrols in the area," he said.

Watch PC Haggett in the video below. Warning: Some users may find the content graphic.

"We are carrying out a full investigation into this matter and I would appeal to anyone with information that may assist our enquiries, including anyone with dash cam footage, to come forward. It is likely that this vehicle would have obtained damage through this incident.

"If you see a vehicle in a field and you suspect the vehicle may be committing offences such as illegal off-roading, poaching or damage to crop I would urge you to ring 999.

"This week is anti-social behaviour awareness week and it so important that we continue to drive down rural crime and anti social behaviour in our rural communities."

Some social media users commenting on the rural crime team's Facebook post have branded the individual(s) that did this "sick", "wicked evil" and "vile".

"Thoughts with the farmer," said one user.

"Absolutely heartbreaking," said another.