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Education, FBI

FBI Upgrades Animal Cruelty To A Felony

Posted by: James Lautner, Senior Cats Editor on April 7, 2015 in Editors Choice, News 10885402_1027032530656996_5962253481430927823_n

A report from WMC Action 5 FBI Raises Animal Cruelty to Top Tier Crime reports on how animal cruelty has been raised to a crime against society at the same level as arson, burglary and kidnapping.

A Huffington Post article more fully explains the implications of this:

Young people who torture and kill animals are prone to violence against people later in life if it goes unchecked, studies have shown. A new federal category for animal cruelty crimes will help root out those pet abusers before their behavior worsens and give a boost to prosecutions, an animal welfare group says.

For years, the FBI has filed animal abuse under the label “other” along with a variety of lesser crimes, making cruelty hard to find, hard to count and hard to track. The bureau announced this month that it would make animal cruelty a Group A felony with its own category — the same way crimes like homicide, arson and assault are listed.

“It will help get better sentences, sway juries and make for better plea bargains,” said Madeline Bernstein, president and CEO of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles and a former New York prosecutor.

The category also will help identify young offenders, and a defendant might realize “if he gets help now, he won’t turn into Jeffrey Dahmer,” she said.

Law enforcement agencies will have to report incidents and arrests in four areas: simple or gross neglect; intentional abuse and torture; organized abuse, including dogfighting and cockfighting; and animal sexual abuse, the FBI said in statement. The bureau didn’t answer questions beyond a short statement.

Unfortunately, it will be January 2016 before this vital data on animal cruelty will even start to be collected – apparently it takes that long to put all the necessary systems in place.

This change of status is clearly a step in the right direction in the battle against animal cruelty. It seems to us that legislators still have much work to do in order to make a real difference.

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About SW Cali Commentary / Net Production

Jessica Zoe was born in Chicago, Illinois,” the windy city” where she spent the first 5 years of her life. She was raised in San Diego, but spent a brief time attending Jr. High school in Ireland where her extended family currently resides. Jessica graduated from Montana State University with a B.S. in Sociology / Anthropology. Soon afterwards she received a M.S. degree in Forensic Science from National University in San Diego. She also received a M.S. in Legal studies at the University of San Diego. Jessica’s favorite aspect of school is the sense of routine and accomplishment that she feels when she completes assignments and papers. The most challenging part of school has been realizing that most of the subject matter presented is best viewed "objectively". In other words, "don’t take all the material presented at face value". After college, Jessica spent several years working as a Legal Assistant for Construction Defect Attorneys in San Diego. She also worked as a Claims Adjuster for car accident attorneys as well. She then moved to north county where she worked in sales for the following 10 years. She has participated in all aspects of selling, from setting the appointment to closing the deal. Her favorite aspect of working has been the interaction with people. She enjoys socializing and is definitely a people-person. Jessica is currently working on her Doctorate of Education in Organizational Leadership, AKA EdD. where she hopes to network her way into the Forensic field to teach and consult. In Jessica’s spare time, she enjoys watersports and online publishing whenever she gets a break fromher current job in Commercial Transport. Jessica's current areas of interest for online self-publishing include: Industrial Automation | Hospital Protocols | Product Recalls | Legal Updates | Weatherizing & Climate | Environment | Space | Racing | Forensics | Sports & Event updates.

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