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SB303 SUB1 Senate Bill 303 History

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COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE

FOR

Senate Bill No. 303

(By Senators Williams, Miller, Wills, Sypolt and Klempa)

____________

[Originating in the Committee on the Judiciary;

reported February 10, 2011.]

____________

 

 

 

A BILL to amend and reenact §19-20-14, §19-20-15, §19-20-16, §19-20-17 and §19-20-18 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, all relating to adding captive cervids to the list of animals protected from dogs which have killed, wounded or worried any of the listed animals; recovering damages; assessing damages by appraisers; killing a dog lawfully; harboring a dog unlawfully; and providing penalties.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:

    That §19-20-14, §19-20-15, §19-20-16, §19-20-17 and §19-20-18 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted, all to read as follows:

ARTICLE 20. DOGS AND CATS.

§19-20-14. Dog killing, wounding or worrying livestock; captive cervids or poultry; recovery of damages.

    If any dog has killed or assisted in killing, wounding or worrying any sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits, horses, colts, captive cervids or poultry out of the enclosure of the owner of the dog, the owner or keeper of the dog shall be liable for the sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits, horses, colts, captive cervids or poultry in the amount of the damages sustained, to be recovered in an action before any court or magistrate having jurisdiction of the action. It shall not be necessary to sustain the action to prove that the owner of the dog knew the dog was accustomed to worrying, killing or wounding. A recovery under this section shall bar and preclude bars the owner of the sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits, horses, colts, captive cervids or poultry from obtaining compensation from the county commission under the provisions of this article. If the person suffering the loss or damage cannot ascertain the owner or keeper of the dog, or if the owner or keeper is not financially responsible, then the person suffering the loss or damage may file his or her claim with and prove the same before the county commission of the county in which the loss or damage is sustained, in the manner provided in this article, and the commission shall pay the loss or damage out of the fund provided for such purposes and according to the provisions of this article. When compensation is so obtained from the county commission, the county commission is authorized to sue under this section and recover as the owner of the sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits, horses, colts, captive cervids or poultry. The amount so recovered shall be paid into the county treasury but no suit shall may be commenced unless authorized by the county commission.

§19-20-15. Dog killing, wounding or worrying livestock; captive cervids or poultry; assessment of damages; appraisers.

    Authority is hereby given to magistrates and notaries public within this state, and within their respective jurisdictions, to summon three substantial, upright and worthy bona fide residents, citizens and taxpayers of his or her county to assess the damages suffered by any a person on account of the destruction, loss or injury of any sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits, horses, colts, captive cervids or poultry by dogs within the county. The appraisers shall be appointed upon the request of a person suffering damages on account of such destruction, loss or injury. The appraisers shall go upon the ground and investigate fully the extent of the destruction, loss or injury, taking all the evidence deemed necessary to arrive at the facts to be passed upon in arriving at the amount of damage, if any, suffered by the party making the complaint. Before the appraisers may be summoned by the magistrate or notary public, the complainant shall be is required to make a sworn complaint before the magistrate or notary public, setting out in plain, easily comprehensible terms the facts concerning his or her damages to the best of his or her knowledge. After making a full investigation of the facts involved, the appraisers, with the assistance of the magistrate or notary public, shall make a sworn statement and report the facts ascertained and the damages suffered. The report and statement shall be filed with the county commission or the clerk thereof in vacation. The fees and mileage for services allowed in such cases shall be the same as are allowed magistrates, witnesses and arbitrators in magistrates' courts in this state for similar services. In the event that If the appraisers find that the complainant has suffered no damage, then the complainant shall be is responsible for and pay all the costs and expenses of the proceeding. In the event that If the complainant has suffered damages on account of the destruction, loss or injury of his or her domestic animals, according to the finding of the appraisers, the owner, keeper or person permitting the dog or dogs causing the damage to remain upon the premises under his or her control shall be is liable for all damages sustained by the complainant, including all costs and necessary expenses. All of the damages shall be collectible by an action at law before any court or magistrate having jurisdiction of the matter. All papers in connection with any a claim shall be filed and preserved in the office of the clerk of the county commission.

§19-20-16. Dog killing, wounding or worrying livestock; captive cervids or poultry; when lawful to kill dog.

    A person may kill a dog that he or she may see observes chasing, worrying, wounding or killing any sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits, horses, colts, captive cervids or poultry outside of the enclosure of the owner of the dog, unless the chasing or worrying be done by the direction of the owner of the sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits or horses and colts, captive cervids or poultry.

§19-20-17. Dog killing, wounding or worrying livestock; captive cervids or poultry; unlawful to harbor dog; penalty.

    A person who shall harbor or secrete or aid harbors, secretes or aids in secreting a dog which he or she knows or has reasons to believe has worried, chased or killed any sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits, horses, colts, captive cervids or poultry not the property of the owner of the dog, out of his or her enclosure, or knowingly permits the same to be done on any premises under his or her control, is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, before any court or magistrate having jurisdiction thereof in the county in which the offense is committed, shall be fined not less than ten dollars $10 nor more than fifty dollars, $50, and, at the discretion of the court or magistrate, imprisoned in the county jail not more than thirty days. Each day that the dog is harbored, kept or secreted shall constitute constitutes a separate offense.

§19-20-18. Dog killing, wounding or worrying livestock; captive cervids or poultry; duty of owner to kill dog; proceeding before magistrate on failure of owner to kill.

    The owner or keeper of a dog that has been worrying, wounding, chasing or killing any sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits, horses, colts, captive cervids or poultry not the property of the owner or keeper, out of his or her enclosure, shall, within forty-eight hours after having received notice thereof in writing from a reliable and trustworthy source, under oath, kill the dog or direct that the dog be killed. If the owner or keeper refuses to kill the dog as hereinbefore provided, the magistrate, upon information, shall summon the owner or keeper of the dog, and, after receiving satisfactory proof that this dog did the mischief, shall issue a warrant on application being made by the owner of the sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits, horses, or colts, captive cervids or poultry killed and give it into the hands of to the sheriff, who shall kill the dog forthwith or dispose of by other available methods. The cost of the proceedings shall be paid by the owner or keeper of the dog so killed, including a fee of fifty cents 50¢ to the officer killing the dog. The owner or keeper of the dog, so killed shall, in addition to the costs, be in addition to the costs, is liable to the owner of the sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits, horses, colts, captive cervids or poultry or to the county commission for the value of the sheep, lambs, goats, kids, calves, cattle, swine, show or breeding rabbits, horses or colts, captive cervids or poultry so killed or injured.

 

 

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