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March 25, 2013

Reward Offered in Idaho Dog Abuse Case

The Humane Society of the United States is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for bludgeoning to death a dog in Jerome County, Idaho.

Under Idaho law, if a person involved in this case has at least two prior animal cruelty convictions in the past 15 years, he or she could be charged with a felony. The HSUS is urging Idaho lawmakers to strengthen the state’s anti-cruelty statute, so that malicious cruelty to animals can be punished as more than a slap on the wrist before a person’s third offense.

The Case: Debbie Blackwood, director of the Twin Falls Animal Shelter, gave the following account: “This dog was found in a remote yet very public area, laid out and draped with a purple blanket. His head was covered by large rocks and his skull appeared to be crushed.”

Animal Cruelty: Getting the serious attention of law enforcement, prosecutors and the community in cases involving allegations of cruelty to animals is an essential step in protecting the community. The connection between animal cruelty and human violence is well documented. Studies show a correlation between animal cruelty and all manner of other crimes, from narcotics and firearms violations to battery and sexual assault.

“The citizens of Jerome County should be very concerned that someone in their community could kill an animal in such an apparently callous manner,” said Lisa Kauffman, Idaho state director for The HSUS.  “We are hopeful that anyone with information about this crime will come forward.”

The Investigators: The Jerome County Sheriff’s Office is investigating. Anyone with information about the case is asked to call 208-324-1911.

Resources: The HSUS Animal Cruelty Campaign raises public awareness and educates communities about the connection between animal cruelty and human violence while providing a variety of resources to law enforcement agencies, social work professionals, educators, legislators and families. The HSUS offers rewards in animal cruelty cases across the country and works to strengthen laws against animal cruelty. To see information on statistics, trends, laws and animal cruelty categories, go to humanesociety.org.

Media Contact: Stephanie Twining, 301-258-1491, stwining@humanesociety.org

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