The crime of Animal Abuse takes place when an animal is the victim of cruel treatment or neglect. This is generally defined as deprivation of food, water, shelter, veterinary services or overworking an animal. Although animal cruelty does exists, unfortunately political pressure and activism often lead to hasty police investigations and overzealous prosecutions. As law enforcement agencies are typically not present to witness these violations, the public is encouraged to report instances of animal cruelty. Animal rights organizations have on-line reporting pages available to the public. Some examples of Animal Abuse are leaving an animal alone for weeks at a time or caged animal without access to sufficient food or water or an accumulation of animals in excess of care conditions or killing puppies or kittens.
What does the prosecutor have to prove?
1. Defendant maimed, militated, tortured, wounded, or killed a living animal
2. Defendant acted maliciously. [Cal Crim No. 2953]
Felony: 16 months/ 2 years/ 3 years
With probation 0-364 days
Misdemeanor: 0-364 days