Supporters Rally for Romeo in the Rotunda

Romeo has become quite a celebrity of sorts in the state capital. He's come to two rallies in support of a law's that's named after him.

But last year, the lab was the subject of a severe beating at the hands of his owner. That man was charged with a misdemeanor and sentenced to 4 months in jail. Now...supporters say if Kentucky had a tougher animal abuse law...offenders would serve more time in prison.

“Kentucky seems to be far behind the other states. I think Kentucky endorses cruelty to animals.We hope to get this law passed,” says Betsy Scott of Frankfort.

Romeo's law would change dog or cat torture to a felony on first offense which means one to 5 years in prison for offenders. The bill sailed through the Senate and cleared two committees. It has not been called for a vote in the full house.

“I don't understand the opposition to the bill. Seems like a no brainer. Several editorials are in support of it. They say it makes senses,” says Pam Rogers of the Kentucky District of the Humane Society of the United States.

Romeo's law has made it to the House Orders of the Day several times. .But each time, it has not been called up for a vote.

Some say they worry about cost to corrections. Others say politics is keeping it from being heard. And some question if it's even needed.

“I think under existing law, you can get a felony on the second time you're caught. The debate is on whether that should be a felony,” says Rep. Rob Wilkey,D-Scottsville.

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  • by tanya Location: stevens on Apr 15, 2008 at 07:22 AM
    John, that is fine that you feel that way, but those are two separate issues. YOu do not know that people that are against animal abuse are not against abortion. You are assuming that they don't care. That is not a fair assumption. I have a dog and he is my baby. He has kidney disease and the day he dies will be a horrible day. I don't have kids, he is all i have right now. They are a part of the family. You are talking about laws, which is what this is. You can't assume that because there is an animal rights issue that there aren't equally important abortion issues, not abosion.
  • by to john Location: ky on Apr 15, 2008 at 06:53 AM
    first of all, what is abosion? the people who support this bill care about life in general, two leggs or four, you can not tell people what they should or should not support. I say more power to them.
  • by John Location: kentucky on Apr 14, 2008 at 05:47 PM
    I care for animals,I have a dog that is a part of our family, but he is still an animal!! How can people be so hipocriticle to say they are for animal rights and demand tougher laws on abuse and we as a state and nation support the killing 1.5 million babies a year through Abosion. when the animals have more rights than the "UNBORN" and people can shead thier tears for an animal being mistreated and in another breath say that a women has the right to chose wheather or not her BABY lives or dies is not human, but are animals themselves! we need to come back to our scinces and realize that we are stupid to think we can change the way people treat animals when we could care less about the innocent "UNBORN BABY" and just allow doctors who abort them and put them in the trash can. WAKE UP AMERICA!!!
  • by Mary Location: Lexington on Apr 14, 2008 at 05:39 PM
    What does it take for people to realize that animal abuse translates into violence against people? If you ask most of the offenders, they started as children with animals and graduated to violence against other human beings. The war against terrorism begins at home--particularly with children and animals, who need us to speak for them. I am really disappointed in the people we have elected.
  • by Pat Location: Eastern Ky. on Apr 14, 2008 at 03:11 PM
    have a question for Rep. Rob Wilkey, "Why should a person have to be "caught" twice in order to be charged with a felony for animal abuse"? Is once okay? Does the animal not suffer the first time? Rep. Wilkey should talk to the people he is suppose to represent. Perhaps, this will be his last time to have the opportunity to serve.


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