A new bill in Michigan would stiffen penalties for animal cruelty.
According to a recent news article, Michigan may soon be increasing penalties for knowingly killing, torturing, mutilating, maiming, disfiguring or poisoning a companion animal (such as a dog, cat or horse). Under the new proposed sentencing guidelines outlined in House Bill 4332, a conviction or guilty plea of neglect or cruelty against an animal could result in a 93-day jail term and a $1,000 fine. Crimes that result in the death of an animal or charges of cruelty against multiple animals could result in a $2,000 fine, with a maximum of 10 years in prison, depending the facts of the case.
Disturbingly, some abusive acts against animals arise out of an offender’s desire to inflict terror and pain upon other living creatures. Demonstrations of violence towards animals and depraved indifference to an animal’s suffering are closely correlated with other forms of criminal behavior including domestic abuse, rape, and homicide. Violent acts against animals are well-documented as one of the earliest and most reliable predictors of later acts of violence against humans.
Take action. Michigan residents, contact your representatives, and urge them to support legislation to increase penalties for animal cruelty.
Re: House Bill 4332
Dear Representative __________,
My name is [Your Name] and I am writing to ask that you support HB 4332 to raise the penalties for companion animal abuse. Violence against companion animals rarely occurs by itself. Offenders who are engaged in these types of crimes very often have, are, or will, commit equally violent acts against others. Raising the penalties for violence against animals will help protect the welfare of innocent animals, and society at large.