Good for the prosecutors for taking this so seriously! It so easily could have been swept under the carpet and minimalized as so many animal cruelty cases are.
I love this quote from the prosecutors, as it really does show what this act was all about:
"You have to look at it as an act of domestic violence," said deputy district attorney Diane Balkin. She handles many of Denver's animal cruelty prosecutions.
"It's really almost a stereotypical case, when abuse of an animal is involved. It's to control and intimidate a victim and force them into compliance. What better way to do that than to take something they care about, rather than something that could be replaced?"
Think of it this way...this woman may have only been allowed to have a fish as a pet due to landlord restrictions and such. What if he had done this to a dog or a cat? There would be no question that this was animal cruelty done to intimidate and torture the woman.