Houston Pair Charged Under Anti-Crush Video Law

In the first case under the 2010 federal crush video law, passed after the Supreme Court struck down a 1999 law against animal cruelty films for being overbroad, the US Attorney in Southern Texas has charged Ashley Nicole Richards and Brent Justice of Houston with “creating and distributing ‘animal crush videos.’” Richards and Justice face five federal animal crush charges and two federal obscenity charges related to eight out of more than 20 videos seized at the time of their felony arrest in August for violating state animal cruelty laws. Richards allegedly admitted to killing hundreds of animals over the years. In proceedings relating to the state charges, the county magistrate, according to the Houston Chronicle, “halted the reading of court documents” because the details were too gruesome. The pair face up to seven years in federal prison on each animal crush charge, up to five years on each obscenity charge, and $250,000 in fines on each count.

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