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Office of the Revisor of Statutes

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

                            CHAPTER 159-S.F.No. 1614 
                  An act relating to animals; criminalizing certain harm 
                  caused to a service animal by a dog; requiring 
                  restitution; clarifying civil liability; imposing a 
                  criminal penalty; amending Minnesota Statutes 2002, 
                  section 609.226, subdivision 3, by adding a 
                  subdivision. 
        BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
           Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 609.226, 
        subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 3.  [DEFENSE.] If proven by a preponderance of the 
        evidence, it shall be an affirmative defense to liability under 
        this section subdivision 1 or 2 that the victim provoked the dog 
        to cause the victim's bodily harm. 
           Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 609.226, is 
        amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 4.  [HARM TO SERVICE ANIMAL CAUSED BY DOG; CRIME, 
        MANDATORY RESTITUTION.] (a) As used in this subdivision, 
        "service animal" means an animal individually trained or being 
        trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an 
        individual with a disability.  
           (b) A person who negligently or intentionally (1) permits 
        the person's dog to run uncontrolled off the person's premises, 
        or (2) fails to keep the person's dog properly confined or 
        controlled; and as a result the dog causes bodily harm to a 
        service animal or otherwise renders a service animal unable to 
        perform its duties, is guilty of a misdemeanor.  
           (c) The court shall order a person convicted of violating 
        this subdivision 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.  
           (d) This subdivision does not preclude a person from 
        seeking any available civil remedies for an act that violates 
        this subdivision. 
           Sec. 3.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
           Sections 1 and 2 are effective August 1, 2004, and apply to 
        crimes committed on or after that date. 
           Presented to the governor April 15, 2004 
           Signed by the governor April 19, 2004, 1:35 p.m.