Colorado bill would ban animal abusers from owning pets

Read the original article by Andrew McMillan at here.

If a Denver lawmaker’s proposed bill passes the Colorado General Assembly, people convicted of animal abuse charges will be banned from owning or taking care of any animal for up to a decade.

Rep. Alex Valdez introduced HB19-1092, or the Animal Ban for Curelty to Animals conviction, on Jan. 14, and it’s slated for a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee this Thursday.

The bill would prohibit people convicted of misdemeanor animal cruelty from “owning an animal of any kind for 5 years,” and that length goes up to 10 years if you’re convicted of a felony animal cruelty charge.

It comes at the same time that Congress is weighing a bill to make animal cruelty charges a federal felony. In Colorado, the maximum penalty for animal cruelty is a misdemeanor with up to 18 months in prison and a $5,000 fine.

The bill also allows the court to order the completion of an anger management treatment program, a mental health treatment, or another treatment program accepted by the court. Fines may be suspended if the convicted person completes the course.

Under the proposed legislation, if someone is banned from owning or taking care of animals and they’re caught with one, they can face up to a $5,000 fine.

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