Success: Abused Animals Given Advocates in Court

Target: Janet Mills, Governor of Maine

Goal: Praise the states’s decision to provide animals with court representation.

Animals that have been previously abused and even killed were not provided with legal rights in Maine. Fortunately, court representation will be provided to the tortured beings thanks to a bill that was recently signed into law. The measure, dubbed as “Franky’s Law” was named after a Boston terrier-pug mix that was taken from his home in 2018 and tragically killed. The dog was tortured and wrapped in garbage bags before getting dumped into the bay. The animal’s body ultimately washed up on a beach in front of the Hancock County District Attorney’s home.

Under the legislation, volunteer lawyers or law students can be assigned to defend and advocate in animal cruelty proceedings. An advocate’s work usually entails interviewing law enforcement personnel and veterinarians, carrying out various research, and advising the court regarding the handling of a case in an appropriate manner. The bill was modeled after a Connecticut law, that resulted in 44 cases in which animal court advocates had been appointed after its implementation in October 2016.

Violence against animals should not be tolerated under any circumstances. More focus should be put on animal welfare, as research shows that animal abuse is often linked to violence against humans. According to research from the University of Windsor, women with pets are undergoing domestic abuse longer and returning home sooner for fear their pets could be harmed. Petitions like this one urged the state of Maine to follow suit in providing protection to suffering animals. Sign below to thank all the individuals involved in the process.


Dear Governor Mills,

An Act to Provide for Court-appointed Advocates for Justice in Animal Cruelty Cases was prompted by the brutal killing of an innocent pug. Animal cruelty and abuse are widespread across the country. Lack of evidence and indifference are just a few causes leading to perpetrators walking free.

By allowing volunteer lawyers to defend animals in court, you provide them with a much needed voice to get justice served. Thank you for providing neglected animals with a chance at a better life.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Matthew Henry

One Comment

  1. Barton Dixon says:

    Thank you to all those who helped to bring this new law about. Thank you for giving a voice to the voiceless.

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