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Tippecanoe County Prosecutor helps with animal cruelty bill

In some cases, people who abuse their cat or dog are still able to own one after conviction. Tippecanoe County Prosecutor Patrick Harrington wants to stop that.

Posted: Jan. 16, 2019 6:46 PM
Updated: Jan. 16, 2019 6:48 PM

TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) - To Tippecanoe County Prosecutor Patrick Harrington, State Sen. Ron Alting's animal cruelty bill just makes sense.

"If you are involved in a crime with a car, your license gets suspended. If you use a handgun illegally your right to own a gun is suspended," explained Harrington. "So, when it comes to animal cruelty or abuse, why are we allowing the person who has been proven guilty to go out and get another animal to possibly abuse?"

Harrington said right now, it's up to a judge whether the convicted abuser can own a cat or dog again.

"And in discussing this with other prosecutors in the state, some judges feel like they don't have the authority to impose that," said Harrington.  

Alting's bill would not only give them the authority, it would mandate judges to take away an abusers' right to own a cat or dog.

"This is a good, solid bill and I look forward to it," said Alting. "Hopefully, it's going to get assigned to my committee in public policy."

Sen. Ron Alting said there has been an extreme increase in the number of animal abuse cases in Indiana.

"Whether it be dumping gas on a dog and lighting it on fire or throwing an animal over a bridge into the lakes or rivers," explained Alting. "This is something really that is out of control that needs to be addressed for all pet lovers and supporters."

News 18 will continue to follow this bill as it moves through the statehouse.

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