Strong Action Against Animal Cruelty Prevents Other Serious Crimes

It all started as an animal cruelty complaint in a small town in North Carolina. Officers who responded to the call found six malnourished dogs – two adults and four puppies –on the property of a 25-year-old woman. All were alive but in need of swift veterinary care. The woman was given the choice to either relinquish the dogs to local animal control or provide them with necessary veterinary care within a week.  The woman refused to do either, so the following week deputies equipped with a warrant took possession of the dogs. Once inside the home, the deputies found evidence of other crimes. By the end of the day, narcotics agents removed thirty-one bags of heroin and a .22 caliber pistol from the home. What started out as a misdemeanor animal cruelty case quickly turned into a situation involving possession of a firearm by a felon and a major drug bust.

Cases like this demonstrate just a few reasons why professionals in every stage of the legal process, from police officers to judges, must be empowered to take swift and strong action in animal cruelty cases. First, when animal cruelty is addressed expediently, the animal victims have a greater chance of recovery. Second, the practices of starving, torturing, and killing animals serve as a major red flag that other crimes may be taking place. Although crimes such as drug trafficking and child abuse may seem unrelated to animal cruelty, these serious crimes and others routinely occur in tandem with animal abuse and neglect. In fact, th ...


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SEPTEMBER—September celebrates all creatures big and small with several animal-related dates. On September 14, we celebrate “National Pet Memorial Day” to celebrate the beloved pets we have loved and lost. This month we remind ourselves of the billions of farmed animals throughout the world during the week of the 14th. All too

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