Georgia Criminal Defense Blog

East Georgia Police Searching for Over 200 Suspects

Posted by Richard Lawson | Dec 20, 2019 | 0 Comments

According to reports out of Lincoln County, police and agents of the Department of Natural Resources are searching for over 200 suspects accused of being involved in an illegal cockfighting tournament.

So far, police have arrested more than 30 people. The tournament took place at a farm north of Augusta, and the owner of that farm has been arrested and charged with operating a gambling establishment as well as aggravated cruelty to animals.

As a Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer, I will outline the law behind cruelty to animals as well as aggravated cruelty to animals in today's post.

Cruelty to Animals and Aggravated Cruelty to Animals in Georgia

Cruelty to Animals in Georgia is defined by the Georgia Code in O.C.G.A. §16-12-4 as:

A person will be guilty of cruelty to animals when they:

  • Cause physical pain, suffering, or death to any animal by any unjustifiable act or omission; or
  • Intentionally exercise custody, control, possession, or ownership of an animal and fail to provide to such animal adequate food, water, sanitary conditions, or ventilation that is consistent with what a reasonable person of ordinary knowledge would believe is the normal requirement and feeding habit for such animal's size, species, breed, age, and physical condition.

Cruelty to animals is classified as a misdemeanor offense in the state of Georgia. This means that the penalty can include up to 12 months in jail as well as fines up to $1,000.

Aggravated Cruelty to Animals in Georgia is defined by the Georgia Code in O.C.G.A. §16-12-4 as:

A person commits aggravated cruelty to animals when he or she:

  • Maliciously causes the death of an animal;
  • Maliciously causes physical harm to an animal by depriving it of a member of its body, by rendering a part of such animal's body useless, or by seriously disfiguring such animal's body or a member thereof;
  • Maliciously tortures an animal by the infliction of or subjection to severe or prolonged physical pain;
  • Maliciously administers poison to an animal, or exposes an animal to any poisonous substance, with the intent that the substance be taken or swallowed by the animal; or
  • Intentionally exercise custody, control, possession, or ownership of an animal and fail to provide to such animal adequate food, water, sanitary conditions, or ventilation that is consistent with what a reasonable person of ordinary knowledge would believe is the normal requirement and feeding habit for such animal's size, species, breed, age, and physical condition to the extent that the death of such animal results or a member of its body is rendered useless or is seriously disfigured.

Aggravated cruelty to animals is classified as a felony. This means that the penalty can include up to five years in prison as well as fines up to $15,000.

Practice Note

If you or a loved one is facing criminal charges in Georgia, contact one of our attorneys today for a free consultation.

About the Author

Richard Lawson

Richard Lawson has devoted his entire career to DUI Defense. He exclusively handles DUI Cases. As a former DUI Prosecutor he knows both sides of your case. Put his experience to work for you. You only have 30 days to protect your right to drive. Call now for immediate attention. We are available 7 days a week, 24 hours a day.

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