BILL NUMBER: AB 242 INTRODUCED BILL TEXT INTRODUCED BY Assembly Member Nava FEBRUARY 10, 2009 An act to amend Section 597.5 of the Penal Code, relating to crimes. LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST AB 242, as introduced, Nava. Dog fighting. Existing law provides that the crime of dog fighting is a felony or a misdemeanor, punishable as specified. Existing law provides that the crime of being a spectator at a dog fight is a misdemeanor. This bill would increase the penalties for these crimes by providing instead that the crime of dog fighting is a felony punishable by imprisonment in a state prison for 2, 3, or 4 years and a specified fine, and the crime of being a spectator at a dog fight is a felony punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for 16 months, or 2 or 3 years. Because certain prosecution costs are added at the local level when a misdemeanor is made a felony, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program. The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement. This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason. Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes. State-mandated local program: yes. THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: SECTION 1. Section 597.5 of the Penal Code is amended to read: 597.5. (a) Any person who does any of the following is guilty of a felony and is punishable by imprisonment in a state prison for
16 months, or two or threetwo, three, or four years , orand by a fine not to exceed fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) , or by both such fine and imprisonment: (1) Owns, possesses, keeps, or trains any dog, with the intent that the dog shall be engaged in an exhibition of fighting with another dog. (2) For amusement or gain, causes any dog to fight with another dog, or causes any dogs to injure each other. (3) Permits any act in violation of paragraph (1) or (2) to be done on any premises under his or her charge or control, or aids or abets that act. (b) Any person who is knowingly present, as a spectator, at any place, building, or tenement where preparations are being made for an exhibition of the fighting of dogs, with the intent to be present at those preparations, or is knowingly present at that exhibition or at any other fighting or injuring as described in paragraph (2) of subdivision (a), with the intent to be present at that exhibition, fighting, or injuring, is guilty of a misdemeanorfelony . (c) Nothing in this section shall prohibit any of the following: (1) The use of dogs in the management of livestock, as defined by Section 14205 of the Food and Agricultural Code, by the owner of the livestock or his or her employees or agents or other persons in lawful custody thereof. (2) The use of dogs in hunting as permitted by the Fish and Game Code, including, but not limited to, Sections 3286, 3509, 3510, 4002, and 4756, and by the rules and regulations of the Fish and Game Commission. (3) The training of dogs or the use of equipment in the training of dogs for any purpose not prohibited by law. SEC. 2. No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.