Not only are animal activists celebrating, animal lovers are also extremely thrilled at the recent news that the FBI has put animal cruelty on the same page as homicide and arson. That’s right, animal cruelty has finally been listed as a felony.
Photo credit: Cristobal Garcia / EPA
The four categories are as follows:
Neglect, intentional abuse and torture, organized abuse (dog fighting), and sexual abuse.
The data will be entered into the public database that the FBI uses for record keeping of national crimes called the National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS). They announced doing this in 2014, but it is just this month where the collecting of data has been taking place, and it will be made public in the coming months.
Not only will this new change deter animal abuses from occurring, it can also point out people who may perform violent acts in the future as studies have shown that violent criminals (nearly 70%) actually start out by abusing animals.
While already a felony in 13 states and in D.C., animal abuse was thrown in with miscellaneous crimes thus the patterns of animal abuse based crimes were impossible to properly get a handle on.
Now they can track these cases of animal abuse. It’s a major shift in policy and one that many believe to be a massively positive step forward.