H. B. 2298
(By Delegates Gallagher, Compton, Staton, Kiss,
Trump, Burke and Rowe)
[Passed March 10, 1995; in effect ninety days from passage.]
AN ACT to amend and reenact section nineteen, article eight,
chapter sixty-one of the code of West Virginia, one thousand
nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, relating to enhanced
and additional criminal penalties for convictions of animal
cruelty; required evaluation; conditions of probation.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That section nineteen, article eight, chapter sixty-one of
the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one,
as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 8. CRIMES AGAINST CHASTITY, MORALITY AND DECENCY.
§61-8-19. Cruelty to animals; penalties; exclusions.
(a) If any person cruelly mistreats, abandons or withholds
proper sustenance, including food, water, shelter or medical
treatment necessary to sustain normal health and fitness or to
end suffering or abandons any animal to die, or uses, trains or possesses any domesticated animal for the purpose of seizing,
detaining or maltreating any other domesticated animal, he or she
is guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction thereof, shall
be fined not less than one hundred nor more than one thousand
dollars, or confined in the county jail not more than six months,
or both so fined and confined.
(b) Any person, other than a licensed veterinarian or a
person acting under the direction or with the approval of a
licensed veterinarian, who knowingly and willfully administers or
causes to be administered to any animal participating in any
contest any controlled substance or any other drug for the
purpose of altering or otherwise affecting said animal's
performance is guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction
thereof, shall be fined not less than one hundred nor more than
one thousand dollars.
(c) Any person convicted of a violation of this section
shall forfeit his or her interest in any such animal and all
interest in such animal shall vest in the humane society or
county pound of the county in which said conviction was rendered,
and such person shall, in addition to any fine imposed, be liable
for any costs incurred or to be incurred by the humane society or
county pound as a result.
(d) For the purpose of this section, the term "controlled substance" shall have the same meaning ascribed to it by
subsection (d), section one hundred one, article one, chapter
sixty-a of this code.
(e) The provisions of this section do not apply to lawful
acts of hunting, fishing, trapping or animal training or farm
livestock, poultry, gaming fowl or wildlife kept in private or
licensed game farms if kept and maintained according to usual and
accepted standards of livestock, poultry, gaming fowl or wildlife
or game farm production and management, nor to humane use of
animals or activities regulated under and in conformity with the
provisions of 7 U.S.C. § 2131 et seq. and the regulations
promulgated thereunder, as both such statutes and regulations are
in effect on the effective date of this section.
(f) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a) of this
section, any person convicted of a second violation of said
subsection is guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be confined in
jail for a period of not less than ninety days nor more than one
year, fined not less than five hundred dollars nor more than one
thousand dollars, or both. The incarceration set forth in this
subsection shall be mandatory unless the provisions of subsection
(g) are complied with.
(g) Notwithstanding any provision of this code to the
contrary, no person who has been convicted of a second or subsequent violation of the provisions of subsection (a) of this
section may be granted probation until the defendant has
undergone a complete psychiatric or psychological evaluation and
the court has reviewed such evaluation. Unless the defendant is
determined by the court to be indigent, he or she shall be
responsible for the cost of said evaluation.
(h) In addition to any other penalty which can be imposed
for a violation of this section, a court may, as a condition of
probation, prohibit any person so convicted from possessing or
owning any animal or type of animal during the period of