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Charges dropped against vet who saved dog | News

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Charges dropped against vet who saved dog
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ATHENS, Ga. -- Authorities have dropped charges against a military veteran who broke a window to free a dog from a hot car.

Michael Hammons, a 46-year-old veteran who says he fought in the first Iraq war, jumped into action when he saw a dog inside of a rapidly-heating Mustang at a Athens-area shopping center. He broke the window of the car with a piece of his wife's wheelchair to free the dog.

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Afterwards – at the insistence of the dog's owner -- Hammons was arrested for criminal trespass, sparking a debate over the need for laws protecting animals.

Current Georgia law allows someone to break a window to save a person, but not an animal.

"The laws need to be changed to protect the animals, not necessarily the people," said Mark Martin, a pet store owner who rallied around Hammons' cause. "We are the voices for the animals; they can't speak for themselves."

A local Ford dealer offered to replace the smashed car window for free.

Ken Mauldin, district attorney for the Superior Court of Athens-Clarke and Oconee counties, said the car's owner agreed with his decision to drop the charges.

Material from USA Today was used in this report

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