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COPS Office Releases New Publication

Animal Cruelty as a Gateway Crime


Animal abuse has long been linked with other forms of antisocial behaviors and criminal violence. It is estimated that animal abusers are five times more likely to commit violent crimes against people, four times more likely to commit property crimes, and three times more likely to have a record for drug or disorderly conduct offenses.

This project was designed to build the capacity of all participating law enforcement agencies to recognize that animal cruelty crimes can serve as precursors to more violent crimes, as a co-occurring crime to other types of offenses, and as an interrelated crime to other offenses such as domestic violence and elder abuse. Armed with this knowledge, law enforcement officers (both those assigned to patrol and investigative duties) can take steps both to solve current crimes and to prevent future crimes from occurring.

- Click here to view the publication -