Feb 16, 2010 10:40 AM by Associated Press

Animals could be added to protection orders

Judges would be able to order suspected domestic abusers to keep away from family animals under a bill being considered by state lawmakers. The measure is set to have its first hearing at the Capitol on Tuesday.

Democratic Sen. Linda Newell of Littleton says domestic abusers can harm or threaten to harm pets as well livestock in an effort to intimidate their victims. She says some victims are afraid to leave
abusive homes out of fear for the animals left behind.

Newell said some courts have allowed animals to be added to protection orders in domestic violence cases but others haven't. The bill would make it clear that they have the ability to do so.


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