On September 2, 2013, Patrick J. O’Neill killed his dog, Ali, by locking her in his car on a hot, humid day for 4 hours while he and his girlfriend enjoyed themselves at the State Fair. Ali suffered hours alone in the car with no water and no relief while temperatures neared 100 degrees. She died a slow, painful death of heat and dehydration, finally succumbing with seizures as rescuers tried to save her.
This is not a case of a “well-intentioned animal lover” who made a foolish mistake. This is a repeat offender with a history of knowingly leaving animals to die, alone and untended.
This same Patrick J. O’Neill is currently facing 22 unrelated counts of animal cruelty related to horses left in his care. 26 starving horses, several with festering injuries and needing medical care, were found along with the dead and rotting corpses of more horses on his property. Photos show horse skeletons strewn around the pasture. In a sworn statement, the neighbor who reported the situation said that Mr. O’Neill had told her he was just going to let some of the horses die.
How is it that this man is still free to harm other animals? How is it that he still has the remaining horses in his “care?” Clearly, the penalties for harming animals are not strong enough to deter even those who have been previously charged.
The only way to stop this kind of cruelty from happening over and over is to make people accountable for their actions. Patrick J. O’Neill is facing only a misdemeanor for killing his dog. We respectfully request that these charges be bumped up to aggravated cruelty, which is a felony and more in keeping with his repeat behaviors. Whatever else happens, this man has demonstrated that he chooses not to be responsible for animals in his care, and therefore should be disallowed from ever owning any animals ever again.
As a society we need to stand up and stop animal abuse. The only way to do that is to institute stricter punishments for offenders. We are following this case closely and hope to see not only justice done, but also a loud and clear message sent to those who would mistreat other living creatures as Patrick J. O’Neill has repeatedly done
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