HARRISBURG – The Senate Judiciary Committee took an important step to help prevent animal cruelty and neglect today by unanimously approving Libre’s Law, legislation to hold animal abusers accountable for harming animals.
Senate Bill 298, introduced by Senator Rich Alloway (R-33), would make it easier to prosecute a person who knowingly mistreats, abuses or neglects an animal. It also adds a new classification for offenders who cause the death or serious bodily injury of an animal. Violators could be found guilty of a third-degree felony.
The legislation was inspired by the story of Libre, a 4-month-old Boston terrier who was rescued in July from a Lancaster County farm after suffering from weeks of severe neglect. The shocking case and Libre’s subsequent recovery generated interest from animal advocates throughout the country.
The Senate approved Libre’s Law last year as part of a package of animal protection measures, but leaders in the House of Representatives refused to bring the bill up for a final vote.
“We were extremely close to sending this bill to Governor Wolf’s desk last year thanks to an incredible network of grassroots advocates who have never stopped fighting to protect animals,” Alloway said. “I am thankful that we were able to build on all of the momentum we generated last year and get Libre’s Law moving through the legislative process again in 2017.”
Senate Bill 298 was sent to the full Senate for consideration.
CONTACT: Melissa Knepper (717) 787-4651