New York Penal Law § 195.11: Harming an Animal Trained to Aid a Person With a Disability in the Second Degree
New York Penal Law § 195.11 is a criminal offense that prohibits harming an animal that has been trained to aid a person with a disability in the second degree. This law is designed to protect service animals and their owners from harm or injury. Under this law, a person is guilty of harming an animal trained to aid a person with a disability in the second degree when they intentionally cause physical injury to such an animal.
The law applies to any animal that has been trained to aid a person with a disability, including guide dogs, hearing dogs, and other service animals. It is also illegal to intentionally interfere with the lawful performance of a service animal by harassing or obstructing the animal or its handler. In order to be convicted of this offense, the prosecution must prove that the defendant acted intentionally and knew that the animal was trained to aid a person with a disability. The harm caused to the animal must also be physical injury.Example
People v. Rivera, 180 Misc. 2d 992 (N.Y. City Crim. Ct. 1999). In People v. Rivera, the defendant, Mr. Rivera, was charged with violating New York Penal Law § 195.11, which prohibits harming an animal trained to aid a person with a disability in the second degree. The case arose from an incident where Mr. Rivera allegedly struck a guide dog that was being led by a blind person, causing the dog to sustain injuries and rendering it unable to perform its duties as a guide dog.
At trial, the court found that Mr. Rivera's actions constituted a violation of § 195.11. The court noted that the statute was intended to protect animals that are trained to aid individuals with disabilities and emphasized that harming such an animal could have serious consequences for the disabled person who relied on it for assistance.
The court also noted that the language of the statute did not require that the defendant have the specific intent to harm the animal. Rather, the statute simply requires that the defendant knowingly cause physical injury to an animal that is trained to aid an individual with a disability.
Ultimately, the court found Mr. Rivera guilty of violating § 195.11 and sentenced him to probation, community service, and a fine. The case serves as an important reminder of the importance of protecting animals that are trained to provide assistance to individuals with disabilities and the serious consequences that can result from harming such animals.Related Offenses
- Killing or injuring a police animal. New York Penal Law section 195.06
- Killing a police work dog or police work horse. New York Penal Law section 195.06-a
- Harming an animal trained to aid a person with a disability in the first degree. New York Penal Law section 195.12
Harming an animal trained to aid a person with a disability in the second degree is a class B misdemeanor under New York Penal Law § 195.11. As a class B misdemeanor, the maximum sentence that can be imposed is up to 3 months in jail, a fine of up to $500, or both. However, it is important to note that the court may also choose to impose a lesser sentence, such as probation, community service, or other alternatives to jail time.Harming an Animal Trained to Aid a Person With a Disability in the Second Degree: New York Penal Law Section 195.11
A person is guilty of harming an animal trained to aid a person with a disability in the second degree when such person intentionally causes physical injury to such animal while it is in the performance of aiding a person with a disability, and thereby renders such animal incapable of providing such aid to such person, or to another person with a disability. For purposes of this section and section 195.12 of this article, the term "disability" means "disability" as defined in subdivision twenty-one of section two hundred ninety-two of the executive law.
Harming an animal trained to aid a person with a disability in the second degree is a class B misdemeanor.Contact Stephen Bilkis & Associates
If you are charged with harming an animal trained to aid a person with a disability in the second degree under New York Penal Law § 195.11, it is important to seek legal representation from an experienced criminal attorney serving New York who understands not only New York law, but also criminal procedure. With the right legal guidance, you can move forward with confidence and work towards putting this difficult experience behind you. Contact Stephen Bilkis & Associates at 800.696.9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in the following locations: Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Staten Island, Suffolk County, and Westchester County.