I read about this news this am in an article posted by Lisa Bernier of the "Bark Post".
The FBI just made animal cruelty a top-tier felony.
Last week the FBI re-categorized animal cruelty as a Class-A felony so abusers could potentially face jail time. This new listing makes it similar to major crimes such as assault, homicide and arson.
The FBI definition of animal cruelty is as follows:
"Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly taking an action that mistreats or kills any animal without just cause, such as torturing, tormenting, mutilation, maiming, poisoning, or abandonment. Included are instances of duty to provide care, e.g., shelter, food, water, care if sick or injured; transporting or confining an animal in a manner likely to cause injury or death; causing an animal to fight with another; inflicting excessive or repeated unnecessary pain or suffering, e.g., uses objects to beat or injure an animal. This definition does not include proper maintenance of animals for show or sport; use of animals for food, lawful hunting, fishing or trapping.”
Due to the link between animal abusers and perpetrators of other crimes against humans, the FBI hopes the information collected on animal abusers will help them better understand the factors that create violent crimes.
Kudos to the FBI for making this happen.