Join our voice and speak up for pit bulls. Here we highlight legislation that affects pit bulls in our community.
How did your legislators vote?
Check out vote smart to find out!
Ex-animal Control Officer Charged with Torturing Dog
April 2017 Update: This case is in pre-trial discussions. We will keep you posted if there is an opportunity to participate as an animal advocate!
Thanks for helping us take a stand against those that get away with intentionally causing harm to another animal.
On February 9, 2016 Ashley Chastain was charged with three Level 6 Felony counts (I.C. 35-46-3-12(C)) of torturing or mutilating a vertebrate animal, for cropping dogs' ears illegally. A Level 6 Felony carries a sentence (I.C. 35-50-2-7(B)) of:
- imprisoned for 6 months to 2.5 years, with advisory sentence being 1 year, and
- Fined no more than $10,000.
Marion County residents are encouraged to join us in advocating to ensure Chastian serves the maximum penalty for her crimes. Chastain's pre-trial court hearing is set for March 29, 2016. Stay tuned to Chastain's court case on My Case.
Senate Bill 25 would make being in attendance at an animal fighting contest a class VI felony. This bill was denied a hearing during the 2016 short legislative session. So we are working to make sure our voices are heard in order to impact change in 2017!
Right now, in Indiana, to be charged with a felony, a spectator at a dog fight must admit to owning one of the dogs present. This loop hole is ridiculous! You know as well as I do that anyone caught at a dog fight is going to say - I've never seen that dog before. So across our state hundred of animal abusers are allowed to go right back to what they were doing - abusing pit bulls, and other dogs, by making them fight for money.
The ASPCA's closer look at Dog Fighting describes the three types of spectators at dog fights. There are those spectators that profit from dog fighting by betting on the 'winning' dog, others where the attraction lies in using the animals as an extension of themselves to fight their battles for them and to demonstrate their strength and prowess and, lastly, those spectators that come for the sadistic enjoyment of a brutal spectacle.
In 2014, the crucial elements of the Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act were signed into law as part of the Federal Farm Bill. This provision makes attending an animal fight anywhere in the U.S. a federal offense, and imposes additional penalties for bringing a child under 16 to an animal fight.
Help us make being a spectator at a dog fight a felony in Indiana! For the last three years, the chair of the Indiana Senate Criminal subcommittee has refused to allow SB25 to have a hearing. We must tell our legislators that this is important and deserves to be heard.
Want to see where Indiana stacks up? The Michigan State University Animal Legal & Historical Center has a great chart of Federal & State Dog Fighting Statues.
Hooray! HB1201, providing that dogs and cats will be spayed and neutered prior to adoption and creating a shelter/rescue registry passed the Senate today, February 23, 2016, unanimously! Now it's on to the Governor's desk. Please call your Senators and tell them thank you for supporting this bill.