SOURCE OF INFORMATION:
New Jersey Animal Rights Alliance
Tara Naylor, taraloganus @ yahoo.com
njara @ nj-ara.org (remove 2 spaces in both)
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yourviews @ app.com (remove 2 spaces) http://www.app.com/app/story/0,21625,943370,00.html
Owner jailed, dogs rescued after they were set afire
Published in the Asbury Park Press 4/13/04
By A. SCOTT FERGUSON, TOMS RIVER BUREAU
Senior Assistant Prosecutor Robert Scott
Ocean County Prosecutor's Office
119 Hooper Avenue
PO Box 2191
Toms River, New Jersey 08754
email: BBlume @ co.ocean.nj.us (remove 2 spaces)
Dear Mr. Scott,
It is difficult to imagine the logic behind Ronald Fredericks' decision to spray his dogs with the lubricant WD-40 and set them on fire. I understand Fredericks has been charged with eight counts of animal cruelty for a senseless act that forced Shadow, a year-old Shepherd mix, to endure severe burn wounds over most of her ears and face. Poppy, a Pekingese, also suffered burn damage to her ears.
Please rigorously investigate and prosecute the defendant in this disturbing case. I hope you will consider the brutality behind Frederick's crime and seek the maximum 18-month prison term and fine for each fourth-degree offense. I encourage you to solicit mandatory psychological counseling for Fredericks and to ensure that he is prohibited from owning or harboring animals.
I also urge you to reject Fredericks' participation in a Pre-Trial Intervention (PTI) program. He should not be allowed to bypass criminal procedure in order to undergo supervisory treatment. PTI programs are appropriate for non-violent offenders. The deliberate torching of two living beings is an act of violence.
Criminologists concur that the intensity of a violent crime--not the identity of the victim--is the most significant factor in cruelty cases. An individual who tortures animals belongs behind bars. In addition, the legal system must not overlook the established link between animal abuse and human violence. In a study of New Jersey families receiving state assistance due to physical abuse within their households, 88 percent claimed their animals had been abused as well. Quite simply, violence is violence; it rarely occurs in isolated pieces.
Domesticated animals rely solely on humans for their care and safekeeping. According to Dr. Sherry Podhayny, a veterinarian with the Popcorn Park Zoo who is treating the dogs, both animals display traces of long-term neglect and abuse. I trust you will evaluate Fredericks' potential for future violence against animals and humans and prosecute him to the fullest extent under the law.
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