Service Animals protected under the law

Service Animals protected under the law


Effective August 1, 2010, and applies to crimes committed on or after that date.

Creates a gross misdemeanor penalty for intentionally rendering a service animal unable to perform its duties; requiring that offenders who are convicted of harming service animals pay restitution; clarifying that civil remedies are not precluded by the criminal penalty for harming service animals.

Creates a gross misdemeanor penalty for the possession of certain devices or substances that enhance an animal's ability to fight.

Please remember that the interpretation and analysis presented here is not intended to be legal advice.  If you are seeking legal advice please contact us for a free consultation and actual examination the issues that your case may present.


Thank you,
Landon J. Ascheman, Esq.
(B) 612.217.0077 (C) 651.280.9533 (F) 651.344.0700
Contact Me LinkedinFacebookBlog RSSTwitterGoogleGoogleGoogle
P.S. Have an attorney in your phone? Add us now 612-217-0077 - While we hope you never need us, we're here if you do.

CHAPTER 292--S.F.No. 2990
An act
relating to public safety; providing a criminal penalty for intentionally
rendering a service animal unable to perform its duties; requiring that offenders
who are convicted of harming service animals pay restitution; clarifying that civil
remedies are not precluded by the criminal penalty for harming service animals;
prohibiting possession of certain devices or substances that enhance an animal's
ability to fight; amending Minnesota Statutes 2008, sections 343.21, subdivisions
8a, 9, by adding a subdivision; 343.31, subdivision 1.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1. Minnesota Statutes 2008, section 343.21, subdivision 8a, is amended to read:
Subd. 8a.Harming a service animal.No person shall intentionally and without
justificationdo either of the followingto a service animal while it is
providing service or while it is in the custody of the person it serves: (1) cause bodily
harm to the animal; or (2) otherwise render the animal unable to perform its duties.
EFFECTIVE DATE.This section is effective August 1, 2010, and applies to crimes
committed on or after that date.

Sec. 2. Minnesota Statutes 2008, section 343.21, subdivision 9, is amended to read:
Subd. 9.Penalty.(a) Except as otherwise provided in this subdivision, a person
who fails to comply with any provision of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor. A
person convicted of a second or subsequent violation of subdivision 1 or 7 within five
years of a previous violation of subdivision 1 or 7 is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
(b) A person who intentionally violates subdivision 1 or 7 where the violation results
in substantial bodily harm to a pet or companion animal may be sentenced to imprisonment
for not more than one year or to payment of a fine of not more than $3,000, or both.
(c) A person convicted of violating paragraph (b) within five years of a previous
gross misdemeanor or felony conviction for violating this section may be sentenced to
imprisonment for not more than two years or to payment of a fine of not more than
$5,000, or both.
(d) A person who intentionally violates subdivision 1 or 7 where the violation
results in death or great bodily harm to a pet or companion animal may be sentenced
to imprisonment for not more than two years or to payment of a fine of not more than
$5,000, or both.
(e)A person who violates subdivision 8a where the violation renders the service
animal unable to perform its duties is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
(f)A person who violates subdivision 8a where the violation results in substantial
bodily harm to a service animal may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than two
years or to payment of a fine of not more than $5,000, or both.
(g)A person who intentionally violates subdivision 1 or 7 where the violation
results in substantial bodily harm to a pet or companion animal, and the act is done to
threaten, intimidate, or terrorize another person, may be sentenced to imprisonment for not
more than two years or to payment of a fine of not more than $5,000, or both.
(h)A person who violates subdivision 8a where the violation results in death or
great bodily harm to a service animal may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than
four years or to payment of a fine of not more than $10,000, or both.
(i)A person who intentionally violates subdivision 1 or 7 where the violation
results in death or great bodily harm to a pet or companion animal, and the act is done to
threaten, intimidate, or terrorize another person, may be sentenced to imprisonment for not
more than four years or to payment of a fine of not more than $10,000, or both.
EFFECTIVE DATE.This section is effective August 1, 2010, and applies to crimes
committed on or after that date.

Sec. 3. Minnesota Statutes 2008, section 343.21, is amended by adding a subdivision
to read:
Subd. 9a.Harm to service animals; mandatory restitution and civil remedies.
(a) The court shall order a person convicted of violating subdivision 8a to pay restitution
for the costs and expenses resulting from the crime. Costs and expenses include, but are
not limited to, the service animal user's loss of income, veterinary expenses, transportation
costs, and other expenses of temporary replacement assistance services, and service
animal replacement or retraining costs incurred by a school, agency, or individual. If the
court finds that the convicted person is indigent, the court may reduce the amount of
restitution to a reasonable level or order it paid in installments.
(b) This section does not preclude a person from seeking any available civil remedies
for an act that violates subdivision 8a.
EFFECTIVE DATE.This section is effective August 1, 2010, and applies to crimes
committed on or after that date.

Sec. 4. Minnesota Statutes 2008, section 343.31, subdivision 1, is amended to read:
Subdivision 1.Penalty for animal fighting; attending animal fight.(a) Whoever
does any of the following is guilty of a felony:
(1) promotes, engages in, or is employed in the activity of cockfighting, dogfighting,
or violent pitting of one pet or companion animal as defined in section346.36, subdivision
6, against another of the same or a different kind;
(2) receives money for the admission of a person to a place used, or about to be
used, for that activity;
(3) willfully permits a person to enter or use for that activity premises of which the
permitter is the owner, agent, or occupant; or
(4) uses, trains, or possesses a dog or other animal for the purpose of participating
in, engaging in, or promoting that activity.
(b) Whoever purchases a ticket of admission or otherwise gains admission to the
activity of cockfighting, dogfighting, or violent pitting of one pet or companion animal as
defined in section346.36, subdivision 6, against another of the same or a different kind is
guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
(c)Whoever possesses any device or substance with intent to use or permit the
use of the device or substance to enhance an animal's ability to fight is guilty of a gross
misdemeanor.
(d)This subdivision shall not apply to the taking of a wild animal by hunting.
EFFECTIVE DATE.This section is effective August 1, 2010, and applies to crimes
committed on or after that date.
Presented to the governor May 6, 2010
Signed by the governor May 10, 2010, 2:05 p.m.



No comments (Add your own)

Add a New Comment


code
 

Comment Guidelines: No HTML is allowed. Off-topic or inappropriate comments will be edited or deleted. Thanks.