Kids Hurting Animals

As mental-health and law-enforcement experts well know, cruelty to animals and violence against humans are inextricably linked. Many educators are aware that serial killers and school shooters—including alleged killers Salvador Ramos, Payton Gendron, Nikolas Cruz, and Ethan Crumbley—tend to have a history of cruelty to animals, and Sandy Hook Promise has cruelty to animals on its “10 Critical Warning Signs of Violence” list.

Forty-three percent of perpetrators of schoolyard massacres commit acts of cruelty to animals first. Educators can help prevent future tragedies by including kindness to animals in the curriculum. Amid the current epidemic of youth violence, PETA urges everyone to report every act of cruelty against animals and calls on authorities to take each animal abuse claim seriously—for the sake of the animal victims and to help prevent future harm. Lives may depend on it.

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State Laws

2017 ORS 336.067¹

Topics given special emphasis in instruction

“In public schools special emphasis shall be given to instruction in:

(a) Honesty, morality, courtesy, obedience to law, respect for the national flag, the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Oregon, respect for parents and the home, the dignity and necessity of honest labor and other lessons that tend to promote and develop an upright and desirable citizenry. . . .

(d) Humane treatment of animals.” (Source)

Reported Animal Abuse Cases

May 2024/Salem, Oregon

KGW.com reported that police were investigating a group of young people suspected of animal abuse related to the gruesome shooting of Vortex, a local family’s cat, whose death was reportedly captured on home surveillance video. The footage appears to depict a group of teens gathered around the cat before another juvenile approaches and shoots the feline at close range with a long-barreled gun. As the cat convulsed on the ground following the alleged vicious attack, the five teens were reportedly seen video-recording the scene in a disturbingly amused spirit. The alleged original shooter then appears to fire a second, point-blank shot at the cat, after which the group reportedly carried her lifeless body to a neighboring yard.

July 2017/Cottage Grove, Oregon

KVAL.com reported that a 15-year-old girl killed a puppy by repeatedly throwing the animal to the floor. She then sent text messages to family members telling them that the puppy was dead and stating, “Ha ha ha.” Police took the girl into custody on one count of aggravated animal abuse in the first degree.