House Rejects Animal Cruelty Bill

LITTLE ROCK (AP) - Concerns in a House committee about allowing police too wide a range of discretion in deciding how to charge an animal abuser helped torpedo a measure that would have made cruelty to cats and dogs a felony. On a 5-to-8 vote yesterday, the House Committee on Agriculture, Forestry and Economic Development rejected the proposal.

The measure by would have made cruelty to dogs or cats a Class D Felony, punishable by up to six years in prison and a $10,000 fine. A Senate panel is expected to consider less severe legislation this week that would make a second offense of animal cruelty a felony.

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