In response, the HSUS’s Wayne Pacelle wrote this:
Union County Sheriff Rocky Nelson told the Dispatch that the behavior he saw on the videotape was “vile and disgusting.” “If there was a way this could be a felony charge, I would push for that,” Nelson said.
Unfortunately, Ohio’s anti-cruelty law does not allow for felony-level charges for farm animal abuse, no matter how malicious the act. This is due to the lobbying influence of Ohio agribusiness interests.
Those same interests are fighting the Ohio ballot initiative to halt the abuse of downer cows, the strangulation of animals on the farm, and life-long confinement of veal calves, breeding sows, and laying hens in cages and crates barely larger than the animals’ bodies. Volunteers are now circulating the petition and have until June 29 to gather 402,000 signatures of registered voters in Ohio.