Petition Closed

 

 

Baltimore, MD:  On January 8, 2011, a witness told police that her grandson and his friend, both 17-year-old males, took the family cat out onto the back porch, covered her with a milk crate then doused her with lighter fluid and intentionally set her on fire. The cat, Mittens, suffered 3rd degree burns is now being cared for at Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter along with her three young kittens. 

Here are three news articles detailing the case: 

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/baltimore-city/bs-md-burned-cat-follow-20110131,0,5110620.story?track=rss 

http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2011/01/31/cat-set-on-fire-in-baltimore-city/ 

http://www.wbaltv.com/r/26668505/detail.html

According to Maryland Code § 10-606 this sounds like a clear-cut case of “aggravated cruelty to animals” yet these young adults are being charged as juveniles.  Animal abuse is a felony crime and should be taken seriously. With extreme cases of animal cruelty on the rise in Baltimore, it’s time to send a clear message these crimes will not be tolerated and perpetrators, even if teenagers, will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

What You Can Do

1. Send a brief and polite letter or email to Gregg Bernstein, State's Attorney for Baltimore City, asking him to prosecute those who abuse, torture or kill animals to the fullest extent of the law, specifically the teenage perpetrators who intentionally set the cat “Mittens” on fire. 

Gregg Bernstein

Office of the State's Attorney for Baltimore City

208 Mitchell Courthouse

110 North Calvert Street

Baltimore, Maryland 21202

Email: gbernstein@stattorney.org 

 

2. Send a brief and polite letter or email to Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake asking her to support police and animal control investigations and enforcement against those who perpetrate felony animal abuse crimes as in the case of the cat “Mittens.”

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake

City Hall, Room 250

100 N. Holliday Street

Baltimore, Maryland 21202

Email: mayor@baltimorecity.gov

 

3.  Send a brief and polite letter or email to Baltimore City Police Commissioner Frederick Bealefeld asking him to handle incidents of animal cruelty as seriously as other violent felony crimes. Police spokespersons indicated they already know that animal cruelty is an indicator of violent crimes against people. 

Commissioner Frederick Bealefeld

Baltimore Police Department

c/o 242 W. 29th St.

Baltimore, MD 21211-2908

Email:  frederick.bealefeld@baltimorepolice.org

 

4. Send a brief and polite letter to Major Johnny Delgado, Commander Northwestern District Police asking him to handle reports of animal cruelty as seriously as other violent felony crimes and as such to fully investigate these crimes.  

Major Johnny Delgado, Commander

Northwestern District Police Station

c/o 242 W. 29th St.

Baltimore, MD 21211-2908

 

 

Letter to
Mayor of Baltimore City Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake
State's Attorney for Baltimore City Gregg Bernstein
Commissioner, Baltimore City Police Department Commissioner Fred Bealefeld
and 1 other
Commander, Northwestern District of the Baltimore City Police Department Major Johnny Delgado
Baltimore is gaining national attention for the extreme cases of animal cruelty perpetuated primarily by juveniles in our city. Most recently two 17-year-old males intentionally set the family cat “Mittens” on fire and prior to that 17-year-old twins abused, brutalized and intentionally set their dog, later known as “Phoenix”, on fire after she didn’t perform well in a dogfight.

According to Maryland Code § 10-606 both of these criminal acts are clear-cut cases of “aggravated cruelty to animals” yet these young adults are routinely charged as juveniles. As you certainly know, research indicates that people who abuse animals are likely involved in other violent crimes.
We all understand the budget crises facing Baltimore City. But failure to prosecute these individuals as adults sends the message that such crimes are not taken seriously, contributing to the overall sense of Baltimore City as a city ridden both with out-of-control crime, and a law enforcement and justice system powerless to deal with the problems. Let’s work together to prove Baltimore’s critics wrong.

I ask that you send a strong message that acts of animal cruelty such as these will not be tolerated and perpetrators, even if they are juveniles, will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Animal abuse is a felony crime and should be taken seriously.

Sincerely,
Pauline Houliaras
President, B-More Dog, Inc.
www.bmoredog.org
[As an all-volunteer nonprofit organization we strive to be part of the solution by offering free humane education to schools and community centers.]