In the world of law enforcement, the link between animal cruelty and domestic violence is well established. A perpetrator will threaten the family pet as leverage or even torture and kill the pet as a means of keeping their partner in line. Victims are often afraid to leave a violent relationship because they cannot takes their pets with them and fear the abuser will take he or her anger out on the animals.
But it goes beyond domestic violence. There is a correlation between animal cruelty during childhood and interpersonal violence in adulthood. Many mass murderers began first abusing animals before moving on to humans.
San Bernardino County District Attorney Mike Ramos has been in the process of forming an Animal Cruelty Prosecution Unit for over a year that will address the connection between animal and human abuse. It finally came to fruition late last month.
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