Newsletter - Animal Writes sm
From 27 December 2000 Issue

Reward Offered in Opossum Killing
from Amanda Valencia - [email protected]

Washington - People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is offering a $500 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the torture and death of an opossum found by Metropolitan Police at the rear of Three 49th St. S.E. in the early evening hours of December 13, 2000. A bottle of starter fluid and a book of matches were found within a few feet of the animal, who was in flames and screaming when found by police but died at the scene due to the extent of her injuries.

Mental health experts and law enforcement officials agree: Cruelty to animals is a red flag. The American Psychiatric Association considers animal cruelty to be one of the diagnostic criteria for conduct disorders, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) uses reports of animal cruelty in analyzing the threat potential of suspected and known criminals. According to Alan Brantley, supervisory special agent at the FBI's National Center for Analysis of Violent Crime, "Violence against human beings, we believe, is an escalation of violence against animals. Animals can represent human victims. They can grimace in pain, suffer, bleed, and die. They are easier to obtain and control, and the penalties for hurting them aren't as stiff."

Anyone with information about this case is encouraged to call the Washington Humane Society at 202-723-5730 or PETA's Research, Investigations & Rescue Department at 757-622-7382

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