SENATE BILL No. 496

 

 

June 28, 2017, Introduced by Senators HERTEL, JONES, BIEDA, KNEZEK, ROCCA and ANANICH and referred to the Committee on Judiciary.

 

 

     A bill to amend 1931 PA 328, entitled

 

"The Michigan penal code,"

 

by amending section 50 (MCL 750.50), as amended by 2007 PA 152.

 

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF MICHIGAN ENACT:

 

     Sec. 50. (1) As used in this section and section 50b:

 

     (a) "Adequate care" means the provision of sufficient food,

 

water, shelter, sanitary conditions, exercise, and veterinary

 

medical attention in order to maintain an animal in a state of good

 

health.

 

     (b) "Animal" means any a vertebrate other than a human being.

 

     (c) "Animal protection shelter" means a facility operated by a

 

person, humane society, society for the prevention of cruelty to

 

animals, or any other nonprofit organization, for the care of

 

homeless animals.

 


     (c) (d) "Animal control shelter" means a facility operated by

 

a county, city, village, or township to impound and care for

 

animals found in streets or otherwise at large contrary to any an

 

ordinance of the county, city, village, or township or state law.

 

     (d) "Animal protection shelter" means a facility operated by a

 

person, humane society, society for the prevention of cruelty to

 

animals, or any other nonprofit organization, for the care of

 

homeless animals.

 

     (e) "Licensed veterinarian" means a person licensed to

 

practice veterinary medicine under article 15 of the public health

 

code, 1978 PA 368, MCL 333.16101 to 333.18838.

 

     (f) "Livestock" means that term as defined in section 5 of the

 

animal industry act, of 1987, 1988 PA 466, MCL 287.701 to

 

287.747.287.705.

 

     (g) "Person" means an individual, partnership, limited

 

liability company, corporation, association, governmental entity,

 

or other legal entity.

 

     (h) "Neglect" means to fail to sufficiently and properly care

 

for an animal to the extent that the animal's health is

 

jeopardized.

 

     (i) "Sanitary conditions" means space free from health hazards

 

including excessive animal waste, overcrowding of animals, or other

 

conditions that endanger the animal's health. This definition does

 

Sanitary conditions do not include any condition resulting from a

 

customary and reasonable practice pursuant to farming or animal

 

husbandry.

 

     (j) "Shelter" means adequate protection from the elements and


weather conditions suitable for the age, species, and physical

 

condition of the animal so as to maintain the animal in a state of

 

good health. Shelter, for livestock, includes structures or natural

 

features such as trees or topography. Shelter, for a dog, includes

 

1 or more of the following:

 

     (i) The residence of the dog's owner or other individual.

 

     (ii) A doghouse that is an enclosed structure with a roof and

 

of appropriate dimensions for the breed and size of the dog. The

 

doghouse shall must have dry bedding when the outdoor temperature

 

is or is predicted to drop below freezing.

 

     (iii) A structure, including a garage, barn, or shed, that is

 

sufficiently insulated and ventilated to protect the dog from

 

exposure to extreme temperatures or, if not sufficiently insulated

 

and ventilated, contains a doghouse as provided under subparagraph

 

(ii) that is accessible to the dog.

 

     (k) "State of good health" means freedom from disease and

 

illness, and in a condition of proper body weight and temperature

 

for the age and species of the animal, unless the animal is

 

undergoing appropriate treatment.

 

     (l) "Tethering" means the restraint and confinement of a dog

 

by use of a chain, rope, or similar device.

 

     (m) "Water" means potable water that is suitable for the age

 

and species of animal and that is made regularly available unless

 

otherwise directed by a licensed veterinarian.

 

     (2) An owner, possessor, or person having the charge or

 

custody of an animal shall not do any of the following:

 

     (a) Fail to provide an animal with adequate care.


     (b) Cruelly drive, work, or beat an animal, or cause an animal

 

to be cruelly driven, worked, or beaten.

 

     (c) Carry or cause to be carried in or upon a vehicle or

 

otherwise any live animal having the feet or legs tied together,

 

other than an animal being transported for medical care, or a horse

 

whose feet are hobbled to protect the horse during transport or in

 

any other cruel and inhumane manner.

 

     (d) Carry or cause to be carried a live animal in or upon a

 

vehicle or otherwise without providing a secure space, rack, car,

 

crate, or cage, in which livestock may stand, and in which all

 

other animals may stand, turn around, and lie down during

 

transportation, or while awaiting slaughter. As used in this

 

subdivision, for purposes of transportation of sled dogs, "stand"

 

means sufficient vertical distance to allow the animal to stand

 

without its shoulders touching the top of the crate or

 

transportation vehicle.

 

     (e) Abandon an animal or cause an animal to be abandoned, in

 

any place, without making provisions for the animal's adequate

 

care, unless premises are vacated for the protection of human life

 

or the prevention of injury to a human being. An animal that is

 

lost by an owner or custodian while traveling, walking, hiking, or

 

hunting is not abandoned under this section when the owner or

 

custodian has made a reasonable effort to locate the animal.

 

     (f) Negligently allow any animal, including one who is aged,

 

diseased, maimed, hopelessly sick, disabled, or nonambulatory to

 

suffer unnecessary neglect, torture, or pain.

 

     (g) Tether a dog unless the tether is at least 3 times the


length of the dog as measured from the tip of its nose to the base

 

of its tail and is attached to a harness or nonchoke collar

 

designed for tethering.

 

     (h) Leave or confine an animal in an unattended motor vehicle

 

under conditions that endanger the health or well-being of the

 

animal, including, but not limited to, heat, cold, lack of adequate

 

ventilation, lack of food or water, or other circumstances that

 

could reasonably be expected to cause suffering, disability, or

 

death of the animal.

 

     (3) If an animal is impounded and is being held by an animal

 

control shelter or its designee or an animal protection shelter or

 

its designee or a licensed veterinarian pending the outcome of a

 

criminal action charging a violation of this section or section

 

50b, before final disposition of the criminal charge, the

 

prosecuting attorney may file a civil action in the court that has

 

jurisdiction of the criminal action, requesting that the court

 

issue an order forfeiting the animal to the animal control shelter

 

or animal protection shelter or to a licensed veterinarian before

 

final disposition of the criminal charge. The prosecuting attorney

 

shall serve a true copy of the summons and complaint upon the

 

defendant and upon a person with a known ownership interest or

 

known security interest in the animal or a person who has filed a

 

lien with the secretary of state in an on the animal. involved in

 

the pending action. The forfeiture of an animal under this section

 

encumbered by a security interest is subject to the interest of the

 

holder of the security interest who if he or she did not have prior

 

knowledge of , or did not consent to the commission of the crime.


Upon the filing of the civil action, the court shall set a hearing

 

on the complaint. The hearing shall must be conducted within 14

 

days of the filing of the civil action, or as soon as practicable.

 

The hearing shall must be before a judge without a jury. At the

 

hearing, the prosecuting attorney has the burden of establishing by

 

a preponderance of the evidence that a violation of this section or

 

section 50b occurred. If the court finds that the prosecuting

 

attorney has met this burden, the court shall order immediate

 

forfeiture of the animal to the animal control shelter or animal

 

protection shelter or the licensed veterinarian unless the

 

defendant, within 72 hours of the hearing, submits to the court

 

clerk cash or other form of security in an amount determined by the

 

court to be sufficient to repay all reasonable costs incurred, and

 

anticipated to be incurred, by the animal control shelter or animal

 

protection shelter or the licensed veterinarian in caring for the

 

animal from the date of initial impoundment to the date of trial.

 

If cash or other security has been submitted, and the trial in the

 

action is continued at a later date, any order of continuance shall

 

must require the defendant to submit additional cash or security in

 

an amount determined by the court to be sufficient to repay all

 

additional reasonable costs anticipated to be incurred by the

 

animal control shelter or animal protection shelter or the licensed

 

veterinarian in caring for the animal until the new date of trial.

 

If the defendant submits cash or other security to the court under

 

this subsection the court may enter an order authorizing the use of

 

that money cash or other security before final disposition of the

 

criminal charges to pay the reasonable costs incurred by the animal


control shelter or animal protection shelter or the licensed

 

veterinarian in caring for the animal from the date of impoundment

 

to the date of final disposition of the criminal charges. The

 

testimony of a person at a hearing held under this subsection is

 

not admissible against him or her in any criminal proceeding except

 

in a criminal prosecution for perjury. The testimony of a person at

 

a hearing held under this subsection does not waive the person's

 

constitutional right against self-incrimination. An animal seized

 

under this section or section 50b is not subject to any other civil

 

action pending the final judgment of the forfeiture action under

 

this subsection.

 

     (4) A person who violates subsection (2) (2)(a) to (g) is

 

guilty of a crime as follows:

 

     (a) Except as otherwise provided in subdivisions (c) and (d),

 

if the violation involved 1 animal, the person is guilty of a

 

misdemeanor punishable by 1 or more of the following and may be

 

ordered to pay the costs of prosecution:

 

     (i) Imprisonment for not more than 93 days.

 

     (ii) A fine of not more than $1,000.00.

 

     (iii) Community service for not more than 200 hours.

 

     (b) Except as otherwise provided in subdivisions (c) and (d),

 

if the violation involved 2 or 3 animals or the death of any

 

animal, the person is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by 1 or

 

more of the following and may be ordered to pay the costs of

 

prosecution:

 

     (i) Imprisonment for not more than 1 year.

 

     (ii) A fine of not more than $2,000.00.


     (iii) Community service for not more than 300 hours.

 

     (c) If the violation involved 4 or more animals but fewer than

 

10 animals or the person had 1 prior conviction under subsection

 

(2), the person is guilty of a felony punishable by 1 or more of

 

the following and may be ordered to pay the costs of prosecution:

 

     (i) Imprisonment for not more than 2 years.

 

     (ii) A fine of not more than $2,000.00.

 

     (iii) Community service for not more than 300 hours.

 

     (d) If the violation involved 10 or more animals or the person

 

had 2 or more prior convictions for violating subsection (2), the

 

person is guilty of a felony punishable by 1 or more of the

 

following and may be ordered to pay the costs of prosecution:

 

     (i) Imprisonment for not more than 4 years.

 

     (ii) A fine of not more than $5,000.00.

 

     (iii) Community service for not more than 500 hours.

 

     (5) A person who violates subsection (2)(h) is guilty of a

 

crime as follows:

 

     (a) Except as otherwise provided in subdivisions (b) to (d),

 

the person is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment

 

for not more than 45 days or a fine of not more than $350.00, or

 

both.

 

     (b) Except as otherwise provided in subdivisions (c) and (d),

 

for a second or subsequent violation of subsection (2)(h), the

 

person is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for

 

not more than 90 days or a fine of not more than $500.00, or both.

 

     (c) If the violation results in serious physical harm to the

 

animal, the person is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by


imprisonment for not more than 1 year or a fine of not more than

 

$1,000.00, or both. As used in this subdivision, "serious physical

 

harm" means any physical injury to an animal that seriously impairs

 

the animal's health or physical well-being.

 

     (d) If the violation results in the death of the animal, the

 

person is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not

 

more than 5 years or a fine of not more than $5,000.00, or both.

 

     (6) (5) The court may order a person convicted of violating

 

subsection (2) to be evaluated to determine the need for

 

psychiatric or psychological counseling and, if determined

 

appropriate by the court, to receive psychiatric or psychological

 

counseling. The evaluation and counseling shall be is at the

 

defendant's own expense.

 

     (7) (6) This section does not prohibit a person from being

 

charged with, convicted of, or punished for any other violation of

 

law arising out of the same transaction as the violation of this

 

section.

 

     (8) (7) The court may order a term of imprisonment imposed for

 

a violation of this section to be served consecutively to a term of

 

imprisonment imposed for any other crime including any other

 

violation of law arising out of the same transaction as the

 

violation of this section.

 

     (9) (8) As a part of the sentence for a violation of

 

subsection (2), the court may order the defendant to pay the costs

 

of the care, housing, and veterinary medical care for the animal,

 

as applicable. If the court does not order a defendant to pay all

 

of the applicable costs listed in this subsection, or orders only


partial payment of these costs, the court shall state on the record

 

the reason for that action.

 

     (10) (9) As a part of the sentence for a violation of

 

subsection (2), the court may, as a condition of probation, order

 

the defendant not to own or possess an animal for a period of time

 

not to exceed the period of probation. If a person is convicted of

 

a second or subsequent violation of subsection (2), the court may

 

order the defendant not to not own or possess an animal for any

 

period of time, including permanent relinquishment of animal

 

ownership.

 

     (11) (10) A person who owns or possesses an animal in

 

violation of an order issued under subsection (9) (10) is subject

 

to revocation of probation if the order is issued as a condition of

 

probation. A person who owns or possesses an animal in violation of

 

an order issued under subsection (9) (10) is also subject to the

 

civil and criminal contempt power of the court, and if found guilty

 

of criminal contempt, may be punished by imprisonment for not more

 

than 90 days, or by a fine of not more than $500.00, or both.

 

     (12) (11) This section does not prohibit the lawful killing or

 

other use of an animal, including the following:

 

     (a) Fishing.

 

     (b) Hunting, trapping, or wildlife control regulated under the

 

natural resources and environmental protection act, 1994 PA 451,

 

MCL 324.101 to 324.90106.

 

     (c) Horse racing.

 

     (d) The operation of a zoological park or aquarium.

 

     (e) Pest or rodent control regulated under part 83 of the


natural resources and environmental protection act, 1994 PA 451,

 

MCL 324.8301 to 324.8336.

 

     (f) Farming or a generally accepted animal husbandry or

 

farming practice involving livestock.

 

     (g) Activities authorized under rules promulgated under

 

section 9 of the executive organization act of 1965, 1965 PA 380,

 

MCL 16.109.

 

     (h) Scientific research under 1969 PA 224, MCL 287.381 to

 

287.395.

 

     (i) Scientific research under sections 2226, 2671, 2676, and

 

7333 of the public health code, 1978 PA 368, MCL 333.2226,

 

333.2671, 333.2676, and 333.7333.

 

     (13) (12) This section does not apply to a veterinarian or a

 

veterinary technician lawfully engaging in the practice of

 

veterinary medicine under part 188 of the public health code, 1978

 

PA 368, MCL 333.18801 to 333.18838.

 

     Enacting section 1. This amendatory act takes effect 90 days

 

after the date it is enacted into law.