Target: Denise Lambiotte, Jefferson County, West Virginia Animal Control Supervisor
Goal: Thank Jefferson County Animal Control in West Virginia for training investigators in how to more effectively recognize and prevent animal cruelty
Animal Control officers in Jefferson County, West Virginia have recently experienced an increasing volume of animal cruelty incidences. In order to combat this growing problem, and with the help of an education grant from the ASPCA, the shelter will be enrolling officers in a professional training program on animal cruelty. For their dedication to keeping animals throughout West Virginia free from harm, Jefferson County Animal Control deserves our gratitude.
Denise Lambiotte, Jefferson County Animal Control Supervisor, organized the training session. The National Animal Cruelty Investigators School, a division of the National Law Enforcement Training Institute in Missouri, will lead the program, which consists of two levels. The first instructs officers how to properly write reports, interview witnesses and suspected abusers, and educates them on animal anatomy. The second level, known as Advanced Investigator, explores criminal activity, agricultural animals, and pet sales and breeders. Officers who complete the training will be able to assess an animal’s overall health and recognize signs of possible criminal activity.
“You never know what you’re getting into,” said Christina Pope, one of two officers who have already completed the first tier of training. “Things are changing all the time. The basics are the same; you know what you’re looking at, you know what you’re doing, but it’s usually something beyond just the animals. Animal cruelty is usually tied into drug activity and it’s usually tied into possible dogfighting. There’s a lot of narcotics, a lot of gambling and sometimes even child or elder abuse. These are things we need to be aware of and know what we’re going into.”
The shelter received funding earlier this year as well. A $3,000 donation was given to them by the West Virginia Thoroughbred Breeders Association to help care for 13 horses seized by animal control officers in the past 12 months. The cruelty-prevention training sessions are one more page in their success story.
Throughout the past year, Jefferson County Animal Control has raised the level of professionalism in animal cruelty prevention to a new standard. Please take a moment to sign the petition below and thank them for their commitment to protecting the lives of animals in West Virginia.
Dear Denise Lambiotte,
In response to a recent surge in animal cruelty cases in Jefferson County, you applied for a grant to educate officers at Jefferson County Animal Control on how to more effectively recognize and prevent animal cruelty and associated criminal activities. Two officers have already completed the first tier of training and will soon move on to the second.
Thank you so much for your dedication to protecting animals from cruelty and neglect. The means through which animal welfare is ensured has changed as cruelty has become a part of other criminal activity and teaching investigators how to recognize these changes is what must be done to keep pets and farm animals safe.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: aawlspca via Flickr