For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 9

Michael Winters

This Law Has Gone to the Dogs

O

n June 28, 2017, after much fanfare
and ballyhoo, Pennsylvania Governor
Tom Wolf signed into law a bill that
significantly strengthened Pennsylvania's
Animal Cruelty statutes. Until that time, many
believed that Pennsylvania's statutory provisions
concerning cruelty to animals were poorly
drafted and simply had no teeth.
The bill (HB 1238), was authored by State
Representative Todd Stephens (R-Montgomery
County), who wrote in his Co-Sponsorship
Memorandum that it has "become abundantly
clear that our current animal abuse statute and
penalties are inadequate and must be updated.
This is especially concerning because of the
links between animal abuse and other forms of
abuse."1 In support of his position, Stephens,
a former prosecutor, cited a National District
Attorney's Association publication, supported in
part by a grant from the American Society for

the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA),
which concluded: (1) animal abuse presents
a risk of child abuse; (2) animal violence
may predict future violence against people;
(3) animal abuse is used to threaten human
victims; (4) animal abuse is used to prevent
families from leaving the abusive home; and,
(5) the co-occurrence of multiple forms of
violence (including violence toward animals)
increases future violence.2
At the signing, while surrounded by
supporters and canines alike, Governor Wolf
proclaimed, "[U]p until now, Pennsylvania was
one of only three states in the entire country
without this kind of tough law against animal
cruelty." He added that he was signing the
bill into law "because I think all of us will
recognize that animal cruelty is not consistent
with Pennsylvania's values and again, and it's
not consistent with the rest of the country."3
Vol. 3, Issue 1

l

For The Defense

9



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018

Contents
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 1
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 2
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - Contents
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 4
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 5
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 6
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 7
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 8
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 9
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 10
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 11
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 12
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 13
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 14
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 15
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 16
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 17
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 18
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 19
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 20
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 21
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 22
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For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 24
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 25
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 26
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 27
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 28
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 29
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 30
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 31
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For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 42
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For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 56
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