Change Animal Cruelty Laws

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Change Animal Cruelty Laws

This petition had 2,347 supporters
James Mercatell started this petition to Congress and

Too often we hear about horrendous cases of animal cruelty. Cases ranging from people neglecting innocent animals to cases of despicable abuse. What is even more enraging than some of the details of these cases are the laughable laws regarding animal cruelty. A maximum sentence of 5 years in federal prison is all that can be handed down. Recently, two women were arrested and charged with nothing more than appearance tickets for starving a dog who was nearly dead and nothing but skeleton when discovered by animal control. We've all heard the grim details of cases, dogs with their mouths taped shut, cats being set on fire, animals being tortured, mutilated, burned and what is the end result for the sick individuals committing these horrendous acts? The judicial equivalent to a slap on the wrist. Things like "barred from owning pets for X amount of years" and "probation" are all that happens. It's sickening and it's a miscarriage of justice.

Right now, in the state of Florida, animal cruelty charges are, at maximum, a class three felony carrying a maximum sentence of 5 years or a $5000 fine. Obviously, the majority of offenders, even in horrendous cases, see nothing close to this sentence. We all know that anyone sentenced to this would appeal and serve probably two, or less, and essentially, walk free. Meanwhile, non violent and petty drug offenders can be, and usually are, sentenced to nearly triple the amount of time than someone who abuses, neglects and tortures innocent creatures.

Some of the cases that I have seen warrant a much, much harsher punishment. And it is time the Florida state Senate, and really any lawmaker around the country, take action.

We are requesting that animal cruelty be elevated to, at minimum, a Class II felony, carrying a maximum prison sentence of 15 years and a $20,000 fine payable directly to local animal shelters. Although some cases, in many peoples minds, warrant even harsher punishments, for those involved in animal rights movements we must realize that small steps are key to change. Right now the first step is to make future animal abusers realize that they can face a hefty amount of time, even after appeals, for sick and depraved acts against innocent creatures of this planet. 15 years is not a light sentence, for anyone. I am asking that my home state of Florida take this petition and introduce legislation that will upgrade animal cruelty from a Class III to a Class II felony. It is time we start getting justice for abused, neglected and tortured animals. And it is time we send a message to people who leave thier dogs chained to a tree, people who tape a dogs mouth and legs and throw them in a field to die, people who make snuff films of puppies being thrown into a freezing river or a burning fire and ANYONE that abuses, neglects and tortures innocent creatures that your depravity will be met with SWIFT justice. No more "registry lists" no more "probation", no. It is time that we put depraved animal abusers where they belong, BEHIND COLD, HARD, STEEL BARS.

This is depravity beyond reproach. These animals scream every day in pain, agony and helplessness. You can choose to sit by and cover your ears, or you can make a choice to do something.

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