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Animal abuse hotline already ringing with tips

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"It's a remarkable progressive step forward for Tri-Cities in an effort to break the cycle of violence and abuse to people and animals."

Tri-Cities has a new way to report animal abuse, and you can do it without even giving your name.

Tri-Cities Crime Stoppers has launched its newest initiative to help police in preventing animal abuse.

People who witness animals being harmed can now provide information anonymously by calling, visiting their website or downloading the mobile app.

Mike Blatman says, "Already seeing a massive influx, I know our facebook page already has over 25,000 views since yesterday, we've received half a dozen tips already about animal abuse."

"This is a serious crime and if people see something they should be letting us know about, animal abuse is the precursor to a lot of violent crime."

According to law enforcement acts of cruelty against animals are considered to be a felony just like crimes such as arson, burglary and assault.

Autumn White says, "Pet abuse is one of the predictors of domestic violence and child abuse.Animal abuse cases can often times reveal individuals who are engaging in other criminal activities."

In many cases, animal cruelty can be a gateway to crime, and law enforcement would like to intervene as early as possible.

Mike Blatman says, "If we can make sure we can identify those folks in advance, we see those things, perhaps we can keep them going down a path that would be self destructive."

And if you think you see something, but aren't sure if it counts as animal cruelty, just give a call.

Mike Blatman says, "What I always tell everybody, if you aren't certain, let us know, let an investigator follow up and find out."

Tri-Cities Crime Stoppers encourage people to work with police in hopes that this abuse will be solved quickly.

Those interested in assisting with the Animal Abuse Crime Stoppers committee can contact them at (509) 582-1351 or mike.blatman@ci.kennewick.wa.us

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