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Ariz. bill would set harsher penalty for animal cruelty

An Arizona Senate committee approved a bill that would expand the definition of animal abuse, impose harsher penalties on people convicted of abusing animals and allow a judge to order that abusers undergo mental health counseling in an effort to prevent further violent crime. "Animal abusers are five times more likely to commit violent crimes against people than non-abusers, and 70% of those charged with cruelty to animals were known to police for other violent behavior, including homicide," said Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery.

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