The Penalties for Animal Cruelty in Ohio

Animal Cruelty Laws Ohio

According to Ohio law, it is a crime to abuse or neglect pets. Common forms of abuse or neglect include intentionally:

  • harming
  • killing
  • torturing
  • poisoning
  • withholding food and water
  • inadequate confinement

First-Degree Animal Cruelty Sentence in OH

A first-offense for intentionally assaulting an animal is a first-degree misdemeanor, which is punishable by a jail sentence of up to 180 days and/or a maximum $1,000 fine. A second or subsequent offense is a fifth-degree felony, which carries a maximum 12-month prison sentence and/or a fine no more than $2,500.

Goddard's Law Ohio

What is Goddard's Law? Also known as House Bill 60, this was signed into Ohio law in 2016. It is considered a fifth-degree felony if on a first-offense you knowingly cause serious physical injury to a pet. However, fifth-degree felonies are often associated with no jail time.

Senate Bill 205 Increases Penalties for Animal Cruelty

Introduced on Wednesday, October 2, a bipartisan bill would make knowingly and needlessly killing a pet a third-degree felony, which results in a jail term of up to 36 months and/or a fine of up to $10,000. Compared to fifth-degree felonies, judges have the discretion to determine jail time.

The proposal was created a little over a week after Antonio Johnson was arrested for allegedly setting a stray dog on fire, which leads to the animal being euthanized. He has pleaded not guilty and is currently being held on a $75,000 bond.

If you have been accused of an animal cruelty crime in Ohio, contact Patituce & Associates today at (440) 709-8088 to discuss your case.

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