Animal cruelty has been a crime in Ohio for more than 140 years. Yet the subject remains misunderstood by many courts, prosecutors, attorneys, the press, and even law enforcement officers.
Animal offenses are some of the most difficult to detect and prosecute, largely because the “victim” cannot speak. And unlike other property offenses, animal victims are often owned by the offender, so there is no objective person with an interest in the damaged property to report the crime.
The purpose of this manual is to remove some of the mystery and confusion by providing clear explanations, simple standards, and an easy reference for humane agents and other law enforcement officers involved in the investigation and prosecution of animal cruelty, neglect, and abandonment.