Detectives urge animal advocates to properly report animal abuse and neglect

There are several way to reports different animal related calls city officials and police urge the community to use the proper lines and share as much information as possible.

There's a new direct line to report animal abuse or neglect to police. The El Paso Police department created the line for the Animal Cruelty Investigations Unit (ACIU) last week since they moved into their headquarters.

Darrel Petry, a public information officer for the department told KFOX14 every unit has a dedicated line and that is why one was created for the unit. Police want the public to utilize the line and know there are still other numbers that be used to report animal abuse, neglect or other animal-related calls.

Petry said the new direct line is already busy taking reports but detectives need callers to be clear, detailed and know who to contact for other animal-related calls so that officers can prioritize reports and work more effectively.

"If people are calling to report cruelty or abuse we need them to be the best witness they can be and if that's in progress we want those individuals to still call or use 911," said Petry.

If it's not in progress but you've witnessed abuse or neglect you can make a report to ACIU's direct line at 915-212-0800.
Detectives urge callers to include a time, date, location, and description of the person and animal; including their breed and size.
"We want people to give as much information as they can, be as thorough as possible and the biggest thing is this is not a caller I.D. number so speak clearly and give your name and call back number if you want an investigator to call you back.
If they have follow up questions it's helpful and you can still remain anonymous if the case moves forward, " said Petry.
Any evidence such as pictures or videos can be helpful and should be mentioned in the report and all information is confidential.

Another resource that can be utilized if you'd like to remain completely anonymous is TIP 411.
Witnesses can make a report by texting the keyword "EPPD" to 847411.
Police ask that you include the same information you would in a report to the direct line.
Include time, location and descriptions of what you witnessed, the person or persons involved and the animal. You can also text pictures and video to this tip line.
This tip line can also be utilized to report animal abuse in the county to the El Paso County Sherriff's Office.

Reports can still be made to El Paso Animal Services but shelter officials ask that reporters use 311 for other animal-related calls such as stray dogs, abandoned animals, bites, or animals left out in extreme weather.
This number can still be used to report animal abuse and neglect too. The information is then forwarded to animal control officers and the ACIU.

According to shelter officials, last year 311 received over 39,000 animal-related calls and so far this year they've received over 3,500.
Both agencies told KFOX14 an increased call volume is a good sign because it means more people are being a voice for animals they just need reporters to call the correct numbers and ensure they include all the information they can to aid them in taking action as quickly as possible.

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