ALDF is celebrating its annual National Justice for Animals Week through Feb. 22. The week is dedicated to raising awareness about animal abuse and urging law enforcement, prosecutors, and lawmakers to protect our animals and our communities from abusers.
“Animal victims cannot speak for themselves — so concerned citizens, and our legal system, must speak for them,” said Stephen Wells, executive director of ALDF. “Vic Reynolds has gone above and beyond to earn his place among America’s Top Ten Animal Defenders during National Justice for Animals Week 2014.”
Reynolds took office Jan. 1, 2013. After seeing several animal-abuse cases, he created an Animal Abuse Unit within the office to send a clear message that this behavior is not tolerated. He also charged his prosecutors with using forfeiture statutes to make sure abused animals are permanently removed from the perpetrators and eventually made available for adoption.
The Unit has been already been successful. There have been several indictments of felony animal abuse returned by the grand jury. The unit has persuaded judges to forfeit animals and to issue court orders prohibiting the perpetrators from retrieving abused animals. Several animals have since been placed with loving adoptive families.
“I am honored for this recognition, but the true credit belongs to the prosecutors and law enforcement on the front lines who work daily to make sure animals are not abused and that the perpetrators who commit such offenses are held accountable,” Reynolds said.
Reynolds and his wife, Holly, live in Marietta with their labs, Cooper and TJ, a rescue.