A very disturbing video was posted online of a man named Wesley Lorenzo Whitmore (as per his Facebook profile) abusing a dog (Peanut) in Memphis TN. In the video, Whitmore is seen berating Peanut, for supposedly having defecated inside the house. Peanut is clearly terrified, displaying a weak and collapsed posture with tail tightly tucked beneath his legs, as the abuser repeatedly yanks him by the collar/neck to a more seated position, screams in his face, shines a bright light in his eyes, and beats him with a rolled up newspaper.
We want to add our voices to the others who have already voiced concern. It is clearly cruelty and abuse and this case is extremely concerning.
We want to bring attention first and foremost to make sure Peanut is removed from that harmful environment and taken to a safe and loving home.
Unfortunately state and local animal cruelty codes are not robust or comprehensive. As such, we acknowledge that Memphis Animal Services' authority to take action may be limited. So we ask that stricter animal cruelty laws and harsher penalties are enacted to include torture, terrorizing, neglect, physical abuse, and emotional abuse. We want to ensure that Peanut and future victims of animal abuse will be protected by the law and that justice is rightfully served.
Calls were made to the Memphis TN Police Department along with Memphis Animal Services (MAS). MAS has been working on it. However the response from the Memphis Police Department officer who originally went out to the abuse location, is extremely concerning as well. His lack of empathy for the victim was disturbing. The Police department never once requested to see the video. When the officer was sent to the home, he instead let the abuser show him the video.
We have never heard of a case where the alleged abuser gets to present the evidence. The officer then expressed that he has done worse to his dog and does not see this as abuse at all. The alleged abuser then went onto social media to brag that he and the officer were laughing at the video when he showed it to him. If this is true, it is also extremely disturbing.
If this was, for example, a woman's abuse case and no one at the station asked for the evidence, instead went to the house and let the accused show them the evidence, laughed at the abuse with the abuser and downplayed the abuse the victim went through, no one would be taking this lightly. All victims deserve the same respect and justice, no matter their species. We are not asking for the officer to be punished this time (hopefully he won't do it again), but we are demanding that all police departments be properly trained and educated on what abuse is of our fellow earthlings, do their jobs properly, which is to protect the abused and be held accountable from now on if they do not take the abuse seriously.
We want to make sure that this case is taken seriously and that swift actions are taken. This means that Peanut deserves to be taken to a safe and loving home and the alleged abuser needs to be appropriately held accountable. Secondly we want those who sworn to protect and serve the victims to be properly trained and held accountable if they do not. Lastly we want laws to be passed to clearly protect victims from this type of abuse.
We are urging the local humane enforcement authorities to work on Peanut's case to bring him to safety and to act on this now to help protect and save other abuse victims and prosecute their abusers.
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