October 21, 2014
Smartphone App Launched to Catch Animal Abusers
ICE BlackBox, a new free smartphone tool, launched to help law enforcement protect animals and communities from illegal animal cruelty. Available to Android and iPhone owners, the app will allow users to record video of illegal animal cruelty and share it securely with law enforcement for possible investigation and prosecution. It is the first app of its kind designed and promoted for the purpose of catching animal abusers.
John Thompson, executive director of the National Sheriffs’ Association said: “Animal cruelty is a serious crime that is often associated with violence to people and we are using the latest in technology to help catch animal abusers in the act. We encourage everyone who has a smartphone and cares about protecting animals and our communities to download this new app.”
Thompson added, “We want to give special thanks to Cesar Millan and the Cesar Millan Foundation for their contribution in the public service announcement video that was shown at the news conference.” This PSA is the first in a series on reporting animal abuse with the ICE BlackBox App.
Michael Markarian, chief program and policy officer for The HSUS, said: “Through innovation and technology, the new app provides another tool for the public to join the fight in stopping animal cruelty and abuse. We are thrilled to work with the National Sheriffs’ Association on this first-ever app to pull back the curtain on animal cruelty.”
Last month, the FBI began to include animal cruelty offenses, including animal neglect, in the Uniform Crime Report. It is the first time animal cruelty data will be included in federal crime reports and it affirms, at high levels of law enforcement, that animal cruelty is a serious crime. There is now increased incentive for law enforcement agencies to respond to crimes against animals, and the app is an important new tool in that important work.