Those who have been convicted of crimes against animals will have to register or risk being jailed and fined.
There is a special place in hell for those who abuse and torture animals, but first, they will have their names noted in an animal offenders registry, that is being adopted by many states in America.
The registry will work similar to the sex offenders registry and will reveal the names of convicted animal abusers in the locality. Tennessee, New York, Suffolk County, and Cook County, Illinois have all implemented animal offenders registry. It will feature the abuser's updated photo, name, date of birth, offense, conviction date, and expiration date.
This good boy was abused and then abandoned. Now rescued - this is his first ride to his new home.— Rex Chapman🏇🏼 (@RexChapman) November 14, 2019
“Just as we place extra trust in teachers and law enforcement, so, too, should we ensure that those engaged in the handling of animals have a spotless record,” said New Jersey representative Troy Singleton, who sponsored the legislation to create a statewide animal abuse registry. As reported by Washington Post.
A couple of years ago, the FBI made animal cruelty a Class A felony and also analyzes animal cruelty as a mean of stopping potential criminals early.
Those who have been convicted of abuse against animals and fail to register will face a year in prison and a fine of $1,000. First-time abusers will be added to the registry for a period of two years and will be listed on for an additional five years if they commit more offenses against animals.
People can be careful about those they hire to care for their pets with the animal offenders registry. It will also be useful for animal shelters to vet those they hire.
Suffolk was the first county to implement the registry in the United States. Suffolk County legislator Jon Cooper, the sponsor of the bill, said it was an additional line of defense for human beings.
"We know there is a very strong correlation between animal abuse and domestic violence. Almost every serial killer starts out by torturing animals, so in a strange sense we could end up protecting the lives of people," said Jon Cooper.
The American Psychiatric Association considers animal cruelty as one of the diagnostic criteria of conduct disorder, which it describes as "a repetitive and persistent pattern of behavior in which the basic rights of others or major age-appropriate societal norms or rules are violated."
Conduct disorder is more often than not found in those who abuse animals and abuse people.
Another county that passed the bill for the implementation fo the animal offenders registry is Hillsborough County. "Most owners consider their pets to be family members. This Registry not only protects animals but it can identify — and maybe even prevent — violence against humans, too,” said Kevin Beckner, the Hillsborough County commissioner, according to The Washington Post.
The registry is receiving support from animal shelters. “This will be a very useful and objective tool for us to lean on when it comes to denying adopters. Now, it won’t just be our gut instinct — we have actual documentation to lean on,” said an adoption counselor at Tree House Humane Society, a Chicago animal shelter.