Enforcing animal cruelty criminal laws is a challenge, particularly in a county without organized animal services. Victims of animal cruelty must be euthanized or housed, vetted and ultimately adopted out. In a criminal cruelty case, the animals are evidence. As such, they must be preserved. Because they are alive, this preservation is called rescue.
In 2015, the Assistant District Attorney serving Jefferson County was faced with the seizure of four dogs incident to a felony cruelty case. Two of these four were capable of rehabilitation. Having no government resources available to assist with care of the dogs, the prosecutor launched a non-profit initiative to facilitate the rescue of these dogs. This initiative became known as FACTS Jefferson, which stands for Felony Animal Cruelty Team Support.
The mission of FACTS Jefferson is as follows:
To support enforcement of animal cruelty laws in Jefferson County, GA.
To facilitate vetting, foster and adoption of animals seized in cruelty cases.
To educate Jefferson County residents on humane companion animal care.
Although FACTS Jefferson has taken in strays from the county, resources are primarily allocated to victims of animal cruelty seized by law enforcement. We are not a substitute for stray dog animal control services. We are, however, open to working with county leadership to improve conditions for all companion animals in Jefferson County, GA.