(WIAT) — Colorado lawmakers are taking up a bill that aims to stop violence against both animals and people. The bill’s sponsor told committee members that 43 percent of school shooters have a history of animal cruelty.
The FBI has also identified animal cruelty as a warning sign for terrorists, but many offenders are not flagged until it’s too late. The new bill would mandate mental health evaluations for those convicted of animal cruelty.
Some members are worried about the impact on ranchers with livestock.
Denver State Rep. Alex Valdez said, “[Animals] are all living beings, they all have the same right to not be abused if repeat crimes against livestock shouldn’t be in care of animals.”
The bill would also bar anyone convicted of animal cruelty from owning any kind of animal for up to five years for a misdemeanor conviction or up to 10 years for a felony.