Ark. lawmakers pass new animal-cruelty law - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Ark. lawmakers pass new animal-cruelty law

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - A bill to strengthen Arkansas' animal-cruelty law and outlaw cockfighting is headed to Gov. Mike Beebe's desk.

Beebe has said he will sign the bill.

The House passed the measure Wednesday to make aggravated cruelty toward dogs, cats and horses a felony on first offense. Violators will face prison sentences and fines. Currently, animal abuse is a misdemeanor.

Two years ago, a similar measure failed after some lawmakers questioned whether it would affect hunting and farming practices.            

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)      

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