Senate Bill No. 302
(By Senators Boley, Nohe and Green)
[Introduced January 27, 2011; referred to the Committee on Government Organization; and then to the Committee on Finance.]
A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new section, designated §19-20-26, relating to creating “Dutch’s Law” to honor fallen law-enforcement canines and their law-enforcement handlers.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended by adding thereto a new section, designated §19-20-26, to read as follows:
ARTICLE 20. DOGS AND CATS.
§19-20-26. Honoring fallen law enforcement K-9s.
(a) This act shall be known as “Dutch’s Law” and is intended to honor law enforcement canines for their devoted service to the state or its political subdivisions, and to help provide closure to grieving law-enforcement officers who have served as handlers for these dogs.
(b) Any canine working for, or retired from, a state law enforcement agency or a law-enforcement agency of a political subdivision of the state shall be memorialized by the law- enforcement agency upon its death if a law-enforcement officer who acted as the canine’s handler so requests. The tribute shall include:
(1) A memorial service, which may be a small informal service within the law-enforcement agency where the canine served, or it may be open to the public, at the discretion of the law- enforcement agency;
(2) A plaque and flag to be presented to the canine’s most recent handler as a memorial to the canine for its distinguished service;
(3) A picture of the canine and its most recent handler to be placed, for an appropriate period of time, on a “wall of honor” at the law-enforcement agency which is dedicated for pictures of canines and their handlers; and
(4) An obituary posted in the local news paper in honor of the fallen canine.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to create “Dutch’s Law” to honor fallen law enforcement canines and their law enforcement handlers.
§19-20-26 is new; therefore, strike-throughs and underscoring have been omitted.