Starting Tuesday, animal abusers may begin facing harsher punishments for animal cruelty under the new law, HB2671.
The new law has been designed to bring down more severe penalties upon animal abusers. The worst an animal abuse case could be classified as, was previously a ‘Class 6 Felony’, which is the lowest felony classification.
The new law forces abusers to get treatment and be under supervised probation in order to prevent future abuse offenses. Prosecutors will now have the option to charge an abuser with a ‘Class 5 Felony’ in order to assure the severity of these animal abuse crimes are recognized due to the fact that they are being done intentionally on defenseless animals and pets.
Shelters across the state are celebrating this new law and what it means for abused animals. The Arizona Humane Society has been pursuing a new law like this one for years.
“There was an amazing outpouring of support for this legislation,” said Dr. Steven Hansen, Arizona Humane Society President and CEO. “It is saddening that the worst abusers would get a simple slap on the wrist. We are so heartened that the people of our state have been heard and that pets have a voice.”
Shelters like AHS know all too well how some owners treat their pets cruelly due to the work they do to save abused animals and help relocate them with loving families.
This month, the Pima County Sheriff’s Department partnered with the Humane Society to train their officers on how to better investigate animal abuse crimes in anticipation for this new law going into effect.
The law is being implemented in hopes that less animals will be abused, but when they are, the perpetrators will be punished justly.
Click here to adopt a furry friend from the Arizona Humane Society. This link also allows individuals to report animal abuse if you witness cruelty.