CLEVELAND, Ohio -- A Senate Bill that would increase the penalties under the current Goddard's Law has been introduced in the 133rd General Assembly.
Fox 8's Dick Goddard is the namesake for Goddard's Law (HB 60), which made it a felony to knowingly cause serious physical harm to a companion animal; it became law in 2016. It provides a fifth-degree felony for causing serious physical harm to a companion animal.
According to a release from the Public Animal Welfare Society (PAWS), PAWS worked with Senate President Larry Obhof, Sen. Jay Hottinger, Sen. Sean O'Brien and attorney Dana Marie Pannella, who created the SB language.
The release states: "Because of sentencing reform laws, person(s) who are convicted of an F5 are spending little to no time in prison even for the most egregious acts against companion animals."
Senate Bill 205, if passed in its current form, would increase the penalty for the current Goddard's Law to a third degree felony. It also adds a fourth-degree felony. The felonies would be non-expungable.