Animal Cruelty

In recognition of the growing number of animal abuse cases in DeKalb County, the District Attorney’s Office established the Animal Cruelty Unit in March 2008. The unit is lead by Assistant District Attorney Debra Wellborn who is responsible for the prosecution of felony animal cruelty cases in DeKalb County.

Animal cruelty is an act of violence or neglect perpetrated against animals. Examples include:
  • Overt abuse
  • Dog fighting
  • Denying a companion animal the basic necessities of care, such as food, water or shelter
In Georgia a person commits animal cruelty -- a misdemeanor -- when he or she causes the death or unjustifiable pain or suffering to any animal by an act, an omission or willful neglect. A person commits aggravated cruelty to animals -- a felony -- when he or she knowingly and maliciously causes death or physical harm to an animal by rendering a part of such animal’s body useless or by seriously disfiguring an animal.