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April, 2024

Sexualized Animal Abuse is a spectrum of behavior

April 28.  Sexualized animal abuse (SAA) emcompasses a range of behavior and interests that use animals for sexual arousal or gratification of a person. [Edwards, 2024]

At one end of the spectrum, SAA involves fondling or non-injurious sexual contact with the animal. At the opposite end, animals are brutally tortured, dismembered, genitally mutilated, and sexually abused before, during, and after death.

As always ...  

For more information on cases, laws, or published studies mentioned, please contact me.

Zoosadism case with international ties

In 2023, Lucas and Heather Vanwoert were arrested for "animal crushing" following an investigation into an Australian man who is currently awaiting sentencing for the brutal torture and death of multiple animals.

The Vanwoert couple is said to have exchanged more than 700 images and videos of animal torture with the Australian offender.

U.S. Federal Law 18 USC §48 crminalizes the depiction of animal torture and the underly acts that involve torture. Lucas Vanwoert faces 7 years in federal prison. His trial is currently underway

Since January 1, there have been 37 SAA-related arrests in the U.S. Thirty offenders (81%) also had or made child or animal pornography. Along with animals, children were sexually abused in 6 cases and adults were sexually abused in 3. Three incidents involved multiple offenders who were involved in acts of zoosadism and animal torture.

These incidents demonstrate the range of behavior:

-   During child porn investigations in Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Oklahoma, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming, animal porn was found in collections of child porn. In multiple cases, the child porn also invoved bondage and bestiality.

-   In Florida, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Texas couples filmed themselves having sex with their dogs.

-   In Missouri, Tennessee, and Texas chickens were beheaded and children were manipulated into self-harming and taking nude selfies,a woman was brutally beaten and her dog dismembered, a donkey was bludgeoned, and a pony decapitated.

If you suspect any form of animal sexual abuse or torture, please reach out to your local law enforcement agency. and

These cases are complex and require meticulous police work to identify suspects and collect evidence. The sexual abuse ... that's often portrayed ... is one of the most unconscionable violations of trust imaginable.  

--(MD State Atty. Rich Gibson)