Pa. bill would require forfeiture in animal cruelty cases

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Pennsylvanians convicted of animal cruelty would have to give up the animals they harmed under legislation pending in the state legislature.

Rep. Ryan A. Bizzarro (D-Erie) has introduced a bill that would require owners to forfeit the animals to shelters.

Under current law, owners may be required to give up animals they abused or neglected at sentencing. Under House Bill 869, forfeiture would no longer be an option.

“Too often, animals are allowed to return to the very owners who have been convicted of abusing them, only continuing the cycle of abuse and neglect,” Bizzarro said in a statement. “By removing these animals from the homes where they have suffered, we can help give them the loving, healthy lives they deserve.”

Bizzarro said moving animals to shelters would also cut down on the need for further seizure costs and frequent checks from law enforcement officers.

His proposal has been referred to the House Judiciary Committee.

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