ALBANY – Governor Andrew Cuomo Wednesday signed legislation that will make the killing of a police animal a felony. Specially-trained police animals, particularly dogs and horses, are often put in harm’s way when they are relied upon by law enforcement to keep New Yorkers safe. The new law will hold responsible individuals who kill these animals.
According to the Gov’s office, Law enforcement agencies have increasingly relied on the use of animals to assist with a variety of tasks to protect New Yorkers, including crime solving as well as rescue and recovery operations. The animals’ specialized abilities are the result of extensive training that requires a great deal of time and resources.
The new law signed by Governor Cuomo (S1079A) will make the killing of a police dog or a police horse while it is performing its duties a class E felony. It is currently a Class A misdemeanor. The new law takes effect on November 1, 2013.