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January 28
1850 - Death Valley '49er William Robinson dies in Soledad Canyon from drinking too much cool water [story]
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| Wednesday, Apr 10, 2019
AV and Simi, Scott and Vanessa Wilk's dogs.
AV and Simi, Scott and Vanessa Wilk's dogs.

 

SACRAMENTO – The California Senate Committee on Public Safety on Wednesday unanimously approved Senate Bill 580, the Animal Cruelty and Violence Intervention Act of 2019, according to Senator Scott Wilk, R-Santa Clarita.

If passed by the legislature and signed into law by the governor, SB 580 would implement new mandates for mental health evaluations, counseling and education for animal abuse offenders.

“SB 580 is about protecting our family members, friends, communities and pets from violent crime,” Wilk said in a statement. “Animal abusers have an ugly track record of moving from crimes against animals to acts of violence against people. SB 580 will begin to break that link by getting animal abusers the resources and help they need before their actions escalate.”

Wilk cited studies showing that half of all school shooters, 70 percent of our most violent prisoners and 71 percent of domestic violence offenders had serious animal abuse in their histories.

Senate Bill 580 would require the most serious offenders convicted under animal abuse crimes to undergo mental health assessments and, if deemed beneficial by a judge, to attend ongoing counseling.

The bill would also allow a judge to assign less serious offenders to an approved humane treatment education course to teach them proper techniques for interacting with animals in a positive way.

“I am thankful to my Senate colleagues for recognizing the importance of this issue and working with me to change to the way we deal with animal abuse offenders,” Wilk said. “SB 580 is a big step in the right direction to ensuring the safety and well-being of animals and people throughout California.”

Senate Bill 580 is supported by a broad coalition of animal rights and law enforcement leaders including the Animal Legal Defense Fund, the California Police Chiefs Association, the Humane Society of the United States, and Social Compassion in Legislation.

Senate Bill 580 will go to the Senate Appropriations Committee for consideration.

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1 Comment

  1. Virginia Kennelly says:

    Having been a state certified animal control officer, having done animal abuse, cruelty and neglect investigations, I agree that professional help is needed but financial restitution and fines work even better! Just do not do like one Judge and sentence an animal abuse to do community service work at an animal shelter! It was worse then putting a kid in a candy shop!

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