Ohio animal cruelty passage follows alpaca death - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Ohio animal cruelty passage follows alpaca death

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A bill toughening penalties for animal cruelty cleared the Ohio House after the savage beating death of a baby alpaca stirred public outrage.

By a 93-3 vote Thursday, the Democrat-led House approved a bill increasing animal cruelty to a first-degree misdemeanor with a penalty of 180 days in jail and a $1,000 fine on a second offense. The measure also requires minors caught torturing or abusing animals to undergo mandatory evaluation and possible therapy. It now heads to the state Senate.

Two 17-year-old boys and a 23-year-old woman have been charged after a three-month-old alpaca named Masterpiece was beaten in January with a makeshift club and dumped in a barn in a southwest Ohio county.

Ohio leads the country in registered alpacas with 25,000.

--- Information from: Journal, http://wwww.middletownjournal.com

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