On June 13, 2016, PAWS Ohio joined then Governor John Kasich as he signed HB 60, Goddard’s Law, which provides, even on a first offense, a fifth-degree felony for causing serious physical harm to a companion animal. Because of sentencing reform laws, person(s) who are convicted of an F5 are spending little to no time in prison even for the most egregious acts against companion animals.
PAWS Ohio, working with Senate President Larry Obhof, the two Joint Sponsors, Senator Jay Hottinger, Senator Sean O’Brien, and Attorney Dana Marie Panella who created SB language would like to announce that SB has been introduced in the 133rd General Assembly.
SB 205 which if passed in its current form, increases the penalty for current Goddard’s Law to a third-degree felony
(C) (1) No person shall knowingly cause serious physical injury to or needlessly kill a companion animal.
SB 205 which if passed in its current form, also adds a fourth-degree felony
(C) (2) No person shall knowingly organize, promote, aid, or abet in violating division (C) (1) of this section.
SB 205 which if passed in its current form, also provides that the above third and fourth degree felonies are non-expungable.
A clear link between animal abuse, domestic violence and child abuse has been established. Researchers have also linked a history of animal cruelty to serial killings and the recent rash of killings by school-age children. Among the most notorious of those serial killers have been Albert DeSalvo (The Boston Strangler), Theodore Bundy, David Berkowitz (Son of Sam), Jeffrey Dahmer, and Martin Bryant – all with a history of animal torture and killing in their childhood. Five of six students in the USA who went on shooting rampages in 1999 had 6 histories of being cruel to animals in their childhoods.
1 Seksel, Kersti, Conference Proceedings, 2004. “The behavioral manifestation of animal cruelty/abuse.