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Virginia license plate raises $30,000+ for homeless animals

Posted at 7:31 PM, Sep 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-09 19:31:30-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- One of the newest license plates in Virginia is helping to save lives across the Commonwealth.

The Team Tommie license plates were created to honor Tommie the dog, who died after being set on fire in a Richmond park in 2019.

The dog's death sparked a nationwide movement as the story went viral and donations poured in for Richmond Animal Care and Control (RACC).

In the wake of the tragedy, the RACC Foundation announced the creation of the Tommie Fund, which helps support the cost of emergency medical care for animals in other municipal shelters across Virginia.

The specialty plates, which cost $25 annually for a standard plate and $35 annually for a personalized plate, have already raised more than $30,000, according to RACC officials.

Not only did the crime against Tommie prompt widespread donations, but it also led to Tommie’s Law, which increased the penalty for all animal cruelty to a class 6 felony -- a charge carrying a sentence of up to five years in prison or a $2,500 fine.