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Petition based on post of Knoxville dog seeks to increase punishment for animal cruelty

“We will continue to monitor the situation and take the appropriate course of action,” KPD said.
“We will continue to monitor the situation and take the appropriate course of action,” KPD said.
“We will continue to monitor the situation and take the appropriate course of action,” KPD said.(KPD)
Published: Aug. 6, 2020 at 8:47 AM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - A petition has been created to draw attention to animal cruelty in Tennessee. It was sparked by a photo of a dog in Knoxville circulating social media.

The Knoxville Police Department's Animal Control Unit is aware of and handling this situation. Animal Control has been...

Posted by Knoxville Police Department - TN on Wednesday, August 5, 2020

The Knoxville Police Department said its Animal Control Unit is closely monitoring what individuals on social media claim to be an animal abuse case.

A post circulating on Facebook showed a an image of a dog chained outside a North Knoxville home. The post claims there are whip marks on one dog and a pen full of other dogs. KPD said the post led multiple calls reporting the situation.

The petition, posted by Amanda Rush, seeks to increase punishment for animal cruelty by invoking Tommie’s Law. The law, signed into Virginia legislation in 2019, increases the penalty for “cruelly or unnecessarily beating, maiming, mutilating, or killing a dog or cat” to a felony, according to WTKR.

Under current Tennessee law, “a non-aggravated first offense of animal cruelty is a misdemeanor. Only a second offense or aggravated act of violence is a Class E felony, punishable by up to one year in jail,” according to the Tennessean.

Police said animal control has been to the home multiple times, including Tuesday afternoon.

KPD officials said there is no current evidence of dog-fighting, but the owner received multiple citations, including improper care and improper restraint.

“We will continue to monitor the situation and take the appropriate course of action,” KPD said.

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