FBI Announces Harsher Penalties for Animal Abuse - WTRF 7 News Sports Weather - Wheeling Steubenville

FBI Announces Harsher Penalties for Animal Abuse

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After all of the dog killings around the valley over the past couple years, residents may be happy to hear that this month the FBI is upping the consequences for people who abuse animals.  

The bureau announced that this month, animal cruelty will now be a top tier, Group A felony with it's own category.

Law enforcement agencies will report incidents and arrests in four areas: Simple or gross neglect, intentional abuse and torture, organized abuse, and animal sexual abuse. 

The FBI says Not only is this extremely harmful to the animals, but often leads to more violent acts in the future.

 "There were studies that the FBI and other agencies have done saying there was a link between animal cruelty and people that were serial killers. That were violent offenders. It's always been there and it's been matched so that this way, at least now I think you've got a way of not only protecting the animals, but the people," said Ohio County Animal Shelter Dog Warden Doug McCrosky.

According to the FBI, many states are seeing more and more of those convicted of animal cruelty, being sentenced prison. 

If you know of anyone abusing animals, the FBI urges you to call 9-1-1 or if it's less of an emergency, your local animal shelter. 

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