On Tuesday, as many as 50 people rallied outside the Brevard-Seminole State Attorney’s Office in Viera demanding that prosecutors push for tough sentencing of Christine Abrams, if she is convicted in the cruel death of her German shepherd, “Ella.” Abrams is accused of abandoning the dog in a locked kennel without food or water. She reportedly told police that she left the dog because she was moving and her new roommate didn’t like dogs. Tragically, she is only facing two misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty.
The protestors also delivered petitions with close to 5,000 signatures asking that prosecutors upgrade the misdemeanor counts to felony charges. The State Attorney’s office has responded by claiming that their hands are tied by how Florida’s cruelty statute is written. “Ella died a senseless, tragic, painful, slow, horrific death, and [her owner] Christine Abrams was charged with misdemeanors,” protestor Pam Mistyhn told the Orlando Sentinel. “The laws need to be changed. The punishment needs to be stricter.”