MacDonald, Wojno testify on animal abuse bills

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Michael D. MacDonald and Sen. Paul Wojno on Thursday outlined their bipartisan legislation to help stop animal abuse to the Senate Judiciary and Public Safety Committee.

“The need for this legislation arose from a tragic case of animal abuse in Macomb County,” said MacDonald, R-Macomb Township. “A man attempted to adopt a dog from a local shelter and was denied. He was able to convince a friend to adopt the dog and give it to him. He then took the dog to a community park, where he brutally stabbed it and left the dog to die in below-freezing temperatures.”

The man was convicted of torturing and killing the dog and sentenced to three to six years in prison. However, the friend who procured the animal will face no repercussions for his role in the crime.

Senate Bill 316 would criminalize the practice of knowingly providing an animal to an individual who intends to abuse the animal or use the animal in a fighting operation. SB 317, sponsored by Wojno, D-Warren, would create sentencing guidelines for the new crime.

“Michigan law already recognizes the crime of acquiring drugs or components used to manufacture illegal drugs for use or sale,” MacDonald said. “This would create a similar statute to protect more animals and allow law enforcement to also target those who help abusers.”

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Photo caption: Sen. Michael D. MacDonald, R-Macomb Township, and Sen. Paul Wojno, D-Warren, outline their bipartisan legislation to help stop animal abuse to the Senate Judiciary and Public Safety Committee. Senate Bills 316-317 would criminalize the practice of knowingly providing an animal to an individual who intends to abuse the animal or use the animal in a fighting operation. The bills are a result of a tragic case of animal abuse in Macomb County, in which a man convinced a friend to adopt a dog and give it to him. He then took the dog to a park, brutally stabbed it and left it to die in freezing temperatures.