10th Annual Animal Law Review Symposium: ‘Psychology & the Law in the Assessment and Treatment of Animal Maltreatment’

Despite growing awareness that animal maltreatment is often a sign of deviant behavior and frequently linked to other forms of interpersonal violence, attorneys and mental health professionals may find themselves lacking practical guidance in these cases. During this session, the panelists will trace the steps involved in animal maltreatment cases from investigation, assessment, adjudication, and treatment, focusing on the roles of mental health professionals and attorneys at each stage of the process. Key themes include increasing awareness of the range of options for assessment and treatment, including collaboration between attorneys and mental health professionals, and acknowledging that effective interventions should not take a “one-size-fits-all” approach. As a Criminal Justice Program Fellow, Brittany Hill assists all stakeholders in the criminal justice system to obtain just outcomes in animal cruelty cases. Brittany graduated cum laude from Lewis & Clark Law School in 2019. Prior to joining the Animal Legal Defense Fund, Brittany worked clemency through Lewis & Clark’s Criminal Justice Reform Clinic and in community law with the Metropolitan Public Defender’s Office as a certified law student. Brittany is passionate about showing others, especially law school students, that reform-minded voices are needed in animal law. Brittany hopes her work can spark conversations about reducing recidivism amongst animal cruelty offenders and what effective accountability looks like. Kathleen Wood began working with the Animal Legal Defense Fund’s Criminal Justice Program in 2016, first as a clerk and then as a fellow. Now as a staff attorney, Kathleen assists prosecutors, law enforcement, and legislators throughout the country to enforce...