Felony animal abuse bill introduced in Wisconsin

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 12:15 PM

SB 139 gets Unanimous Approval from the Senate Executive Committee

Animal sexual abuse is a complex form of animal cruelty and sexual assault. And Wisconsin has experienced some of its most deviant forms over the years.

 2005, Bryan Hathaway shot and killed a horse for the purpose of having sex with it; he was arrested again in 2007 for having sex with a roadkill deer. 

Sterling Rachwal has been arrested numerous times over the past 30 years for the sexual assault and mutilation of multiple horses throughout the state. His most recent arrest in 2018 resulted in two  years' probation.

Daniel Lazic was arrested earlier this year for the sexual assault of multiple children over a five-years period, one of whom was forced to watch him have sex with the family dog. Under current Wisconsin law, his maximum penalty would be nine months in jail. 

In March, Sen. Andre' Jacque introduced a bill that would make bestiality a felony offense, punishible by a $10,000 fine and up to six years in prison. 

Last week, the Senate Judiciary and Public Safety Committee heard testimony from several people on why bestiality presents a danger to Wisconsin communities. Sgt. Phil Nichols told committee members about the hidden victims of animal sexual abuse who experience fear and anxiety after their animals are attacked. Subject matter expert, M. Jenny Edwards presented research findings and gave examples of Wisconsin cases that represent the full spectrum of criminal behavior exhibited by animal sex abusers.

Legislative liaison Eilene Ribbens and Megan Nicholson, the state director of the Humane Society of the United States ....

The Bill with one Amendment has now passed the Executive Committee and will now pass to the Assembly for review.