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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

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

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 justification cause bodily harm do either of the following to 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.

(f) (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.

(g) (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.

(h) (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 section 346.36, 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 section 346.36, 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.