In Paterson Erbin Green a 54 year old city man was charged with striking a pit bull with a machete. Mr. Green was charged with six different counts of animal cruelty for slashing the pit bull, who was owned by a relative of his. The injuries were so severe to the pit that the dog had to be euthanized. Paterson Police Director Jerry Speziale noted that animal cruelty will not be tolerated in the city. The charges are five fourth degree counts of animal cruelty. There also is one charge of third degree animal cruelty. A third degree animal cruelty charge is an indictable offense. Harming any animal in the state of New Jersey is a serious crime.
Under N.J.S.A. 4:22-17 which is Animal Cruelty. The charges are stratified, and the penalties for animal cruelty are varied. They can range from small fines all the way up to jail time, depending on the degree of the crime. If found guilty of a crime of the 3rd degree in animal cruelty a person can be facing anywhere from 3 to 5 years in New Jersey State Prison. A person found guilty of a crime of the 4th degree is looking at up to 18 months in New Jersey State Prison for each offense.
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