October 29, 1998
Prosecutor's Office - Delinquency
Cuyahoga County Juvenile Court
2163 East 22nd Street
Cleveland, Ohio 44115
Re: 11-Year-Old Cleveland Boy Kills Cat & Kittens with Bricks
I have been following the above-referenced story/case both via WJW/Fox-8
News and the article appearing in the Cleveland Plain Dealer. I was saddened
and sickened by the actions of this child, not to mention moved to tears
by the pain and suffering of these innocent creatures which occurred just
about 60-blocks from my own home.
It is obvious that a child acting out such violent tendencies out of boredom
is likely, unless properly counseled and rehabilitated, to be not only
a repeat offender of this type of criminal activity, but is likely to graduate
to more heinous crimes. He will grow more apathetic regarding the value
of life and eventually the value of human life--treating or should I say
mistreating humans in a similar manner.
Psychiatrists and psychologists have identified a definite link between
the torturing and killing of animals by children and adults committing
violent criminal acts towards humans with little or no remorse for their
actions. Serial killers like Albert DeSalvo and Jeffrey Dahmer had a history
of animal abuse as children. And, with the school children killing classmates
in the news over the past year, it seems some children are graduating to
this higher level of violence and murder at an even younger age and faster
rate than ever before.
Therefore, I urge you as Prosecutor to pursue this case to the fullest
extent of the law and to make a strong argument for psychological testing
and counseling for the child and perhaps even his family to educate them
on warning signs to anti-social, psychopathic behavior. It is essential
that in addition to psychological treatment that this child receive some
punishment for his actions. He needs to understand that while he may have
a problem or deficiency that caused or allowed his callous criminal behavior,
what he did was wrong and wrong actions have consequences.
I thank you for taking a moment of your valuable time to read my letter
and include for your further information a recent article from the Wall
Street Journal on animal abuse and criminal accountability.