MEDIA RELEASE: Dog Burning Sparks Calls for New Law to Protect Animals and Children
Carroll County, Miss. (June 25, 2021) – In Defense of Animals has sent Sen. Angela Hill a letter signed by more than 14,000 animal advocates imploring her to sponsor Buddy’s law to hold parents accountable for egregious acts of violence inflicted on animals by their children.
In Defense of Animals has presented Sen. Hill with the letter from its Mississippi-based Justice for Animals Campaign. The effort was prompted by the case of Buddy, a dog who was severely injured by a minor under the age of 12. Many were horrified to learn that Mississippi law does not empower officers to intervene in cases of egregious animal cruelty by minors, which can be an indicator of domestic violence.
Buddy, a Labrador retriever mix, was found severely injured on April 22. He was suffering from third and fourth-degree burns on his face, and he had an extension cord tied around his neck. Buddy was taken to Horn Lake Animal Hospital, transferred to State Line Animal Hospital the next day, and he was admitted to Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine, where he’s still being treated. The Tunica Humane Society set up a fund for the costs of Buddy’s recovery.
Tate County Sheriff Brad Lance went to great lengths to address this heinous crime, and although undisclosed measures were taken, ultimately, his hands were tied to truly address the abuse.
Law enforcement and the courts need to be empowered to intervene and see that children with a propensity for violence are able to get the counseling needed to heal them, or that they are removed from abusive or otherwise unfit living situations.
“Senator Angela Hill authored the successful amendment strengthening Mississippi’s animal protection law to allow a felony charge for a first offense of animal cruelty, and a charge for each animal harmed, and she has expressed interest in championing Buddy’s law,” said Doll Stanley, In Defense of Animals’ Justice for Animals Campaign Director. “For youth offenders, it’s highly likely that they’re being abused themselves, or that someone in their home is. They are also more likely to go on to commit further violent offenses unless they are met with a serious and meaningful intervention. Buddy’s law will support child and animal victims of abuse, and create a safer Mississippi now and for our future.”
“Fellow advocates are expressing frustration over what seems to be a rising number of animal cruelty cases. Either witnesses are more dutiful, or the vulnerable of society are the victims of individuals who aren’t coping with recent social upheavals. There is never an excuse for cruelty,” added Stanley.
In Defense of Animals has served in Mississippi since 1983, rescuing, investigating, and working for a Mississippi that isn’t 50th in animal laws and welfare.
Contact: Doll Stanley, [email protected], (662) 809-4483
In Defense of Animals is an international animal protection organization with over 250,000 supporters and a 38-year history of fighting for animals, people, and the environment through education and campaigns as well as hands-on rescue facilities in India, South Korea, and rural Mississippi. www.idausa.org/justice4animals
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