Chris DeRose (born June 28, 1948) is an animal rights activist,[1] recipient of the 1977 ‘Courage of Conscience’ International Peace Award[1] and a former actor. He appeared on General Hospital, Cagney and Lacey, CHiPs, The Rockford Files and Baretta. He was an on-camera reporter for the television shows Hard Copy and Inside Edition. Earlier, he worked as a police officer and as an investigator.

DeRose was born in Brooklyn, New York. He is the founder and president of Last Chance for Animals and the author of the book In Your Face: From Actor to Animal Activist. DeRose has been arrested 11 times and jailed 4 times for opposing animal cruelty, including his participation in a break-in at the UCLA Brain Research Institute in 1988. DeRose was fired from General Hospital when he had to go to jail.

DeRose appeared in the 2006 HBO Documentary "Dealing Dogs" along with an undercover animal rights activist known as "Pete" and other activists of Last Chance for Animals. Together, they uncovered mistreatment of animals on a large scale at the Martin Creek Kennel in Arkansas. They were successful in closing down the operation and subsequently found homes for the mistreated dogs that were being sold to labs for experimentation.

"Dealing Dogs" documents the project that was designed to expose Martin Creek Kennel's inhumane treatment of dogs and violations of the law. The investigation was initiated by Last Chance for Animals, a Los Angeles-based animal-rights group. Chris DeRose, the founder and president of Last Chance for Animals, said he hoped "Dealing Dogs" would speed the passage of the Pet Safety and Protection Act, which amends the Animal Welfare Act to ensure that dogs and cats used by research facilities are obtained legally. "We want to put them out of business," Mr. DeRose said of the crooked Class B dealers.[2]

One of DeRose's most controversial actions was arranging for two undercover operatives to pay Wisconsin animal dealer Erving Stebane $50 to kill and butcher a dog while DeRose secretly videotaped the action. Felony charges were filed against the dealer, but in June 1993 Calumet County circuit judge Donald Poppy ruled that the case constituted illegal entrapment and ordered the return of 143 dogs which had been seized. Template:Citation needed In an interview with Kit Pavarenti,[3] DeRose grimaces at the words. “I made a painful decision,” he admits, “and a dog died.” The memory of that night still carries more than its share of remorse. To fend it off, he reminds us and himself that the dog’s death was imminent, with or without the presence of a camera, and that the camera brought at least some degree of meaning to its sacrifice. Indeed, the public outrage precipitated by the case galvanized not only the community, but drew the attention of U.S. Representative Toy Roth (D-WI), who introduced the Stebane Bill,” legislation designed to strengthen penalties for violations of the Animal Welfare Act. Roth also wrote a letter to Mike Espy, Secretary of Agriculture, voicing his deep concerns with unlawful Class B vendor activities. His sentiments are echoed by U.S. Senator Fiengold (R-WI).[3]

DeRose received the 1997 Courage of Conscience International Peace Award. In 2006, he became the Director of Animal Welfare (DAW) for West Hollywood, California.

On March 4, 2008, DeRose posted a video response to YouTube calling out an American Marine, David Mortari, who threw a puppy off a cliff in Iraq. DeRose called Mortari a coward and stated he was disturbed by the video.[4]

References Edit

  1. 1.0 1.1 "Chris DeRose: The Warrior", Sue Russell Writes, Brntwd Magazine, USA, 2001
  2. "How Dogs Are Abused in a Scheme for Profit", The New York Times, February 26, 2006
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Last Chance For Animals' Chris DeRose",
  4. CHRIS DeROSE David Mortari Puppy Off Cliff Response. YouTube (2008-03-04). Retrieved on 2008-03-07.

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