Target: President of The National Sheriff’s Association, John E. Aubrey
Goal: Applaud decision to help abused animals by collecting data on animal cruelty offenses.
Starting January 2016, the FBI will document animal cruelty offenses separate from other offenses in the National Incident Based Reporting System. Currently, animal cruelty data is collected under “all other offenses.”
Thanks to The National Sheriff’s Association and the Animal Welfare Institute, animal cruelty will be classified as a Group A offense under “Crime against Society.” This will include types of animal abuse such as: simple/gross neglect, organized abuse, intentional abuse and torture, and animal sexual abuse.
Now that the FBI will have a more specific designation of animal cruelty offenses, they will be able to better track the people who are committing these horrible offenses. Officials have noted the link between people who are violent to others and their habit of being violent with animals as well. This tracking will help allocate resources more efficiently and crack down on crimes against animals. Additionally, it will help judges be able to take animal cruelty offenses more seriously.
The FBI defines animal cruelty as “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.” By collecting the data for animal cruelty cases separately, the FBI will help the public see clearly how animal cruelty is a serious issue.
Dear Sheriff Aubrey,
I would like to thank you and those at The National Sheriff’s Association and the Animal Welfare Institute for submitting proposals to classify animal cruelty offenses separate from other offenses. By doing this simple act, animal cruelty will be better documented and data will reveal how serious of a problem it is.
It is truly horrible what some animals are subjected to every day, and yet many officers have an “out of sight, out of mind” attitude toward animal cruelty. Collecting this data is vital to the cause of animals because it will highlight these cases. Thank you for working tirelessly to help those who do not have a voice.
Before the FBI made this change, they had no method for collecting animal cruelty data on a statewide or national level. Now that these offenses will be listed in the National Incident Based Reporting System, law enforcement will have an incentive to focus their efforts on such incidents. Resources will also be better distributed after collecting this data.
We need to continue to make animal cruelty cases a serious priority for both people and animals to live better lives. Thank you for your efforts to make this a reality.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: cocoparisienne