BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                       



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                                 THIRD READING


          Bill No:  AB 2012
          Author:   Lieu (D)
          Amended:  04/28/10 in Assembly
          Vote:     21

           
           SENATE PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE  :  6-1, 6/22/10
          AYES:  Leno, Cogdill, Cedillo, Hancock, Steinberg, Wright
          NOES:  Huff

           SENATE APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE  :  Senate Rule 28.8

           ASSEMBLY FLOOR  :  60-10, 5/24/10 - See last page for vote


           SUBJECT  :    Criminal procedure:  cruelty to animals

           SOURCE :     American society for the Prevention of Cruelty  
          to Animals
                      Los Angeles Society for Prevention of Cruelty  
          to Animals
                      State Humane Association of California


           DIGEST  :    This bill conforms the misdemeanor penalty for  
          overloading, torturing, tormenting, et cetera, and animal  
          to other subdivisions within the same section thus allowing  
          for up to one year in jail for the misdemeanor portion of  
          the existing wobbler.

           ANALYSIS  :    Existing law states that any person that is  
          knowingly present, as a spectator, at any place, building,  
          or tenement where preparations are being made for an  
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          exhibition of the fighting of dogs, with the intent to be  
          present at those preparations, or is knowingly present at  
          the exhibition, fighting or injuring with the intent to be  
          present at the exhibition, fighting, or injuring is guilty  
          of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in a county  
          jail not to exceed one year, or by a fine not exceeding  
          $5,000, or by both.  (Penal Code Section 597.5(b).)
           
          Existing law provides that any person who causes any  
          animal, not including a dog, to fight with another animal,  
          or permits the same to be done on any property under his or  
          her control, or aids or abets the fighting of any animal is  
          guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in  
          the county jail or by a fine not to exceed $5,000; or both.  
           (Penal Code Section 597b(a).)
           
          Existing law provides that any person who causes a cock to  
          fight with another cock, or permits the same to be done on  
          any property under his or her control, and any person who  
          aid or abets the fighting of any cock or is present as a  
          spectator is guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by  
          imprisonment in the county jail not to exceed one year, or  
          by a fine not to exceed $5,000, or by both.  (Penal Code  
          Section 597b(b).)
           
          Existing law provides that any person who is knowingly  
          present as a spectator at any place, building, or tenement  
          for an exhibition of animal fighting, or who is knowingly  
          present at that exhibition, or is knowingly present where  
          preparations are being made for the exhibition, fighting,  
          or injuring of an animal is guilty of a misdemeanor  
          punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed  
          six months, or by a fine not exceeding $1,000, or by both.   
          (Penal Code Section 597c.)
           
          Existing law provides that any person who owns, possesses,  
          keeps or trains any bird or other animal with the intent  
          that that it be used in an exhibition of fighting is guilty  
          of a misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment in the county  
          jail not to exceed one year, by a fine not to exceed  
          $5,000, or by both.  (Penal Code Section 597j.)

          Existing law provides that every person who maliciously and  
          intentionally maims, mutilates, tortures, or wounds a  

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          living animal or maliciously and intentionally kills an  
          animal is guilty of either a misdemeanor or felony,  
          punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for up to one  
          year and/or by a fine up to $20,000, or by imprisonment in  
          state prison for 16 months, two or three years and/or a  
          fine up to $20,000.  (Penal Code Section 597(a).)

          Existing law provides that every person who maliciously and  
          intentionally maims, mutilates, or tortures any mammal,  
          bird, reptile, amphibian, or fish is guilty of either a  
          misdemeanor or felony, punishable by imprisonment in a  
          county jail for up to one year and/or by a fine up to  
          $20,000, or by imprisonment in state prison for 16 months,  
          two or three years and/or a fine up to $20,000.  (Penal  
          Code Section 597(c).)
            
          Existing law states that every person who overdrives,  
          overloads, overworks, tortures, torments, deprives of  
          drink, cruelly beats, or mutilates an animal is guilty of  
          either a misdemeanor or felony, punishable by imprisonment  
          in a county jail for up to six months and/or by a fine up  
          to $20,000, or by imprisonment in state prison for 16  
          months, two or three years and/or a fine up to $20,000.   
          (Penal Code Section 597(b).)

          This bill makes the potential jail time for overloading,  
          overworking, et cetera, up to one year.

          This bill reorganizes Penal Code Section 597 so penalties  
          are listed in one subsection.

           FISCAL EFFECT  :    Appropriation:  No   Fiscal Com.:  Yes    
          Local:  Yes

           SUPPORT  :   (Verified  8/2/10)

          American society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals  
          (co-source)
          Los Angeles Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals  
          (co-source)
          State Humane Association of California (co-source)
          Amador County Animal Control
          California District Attorneys Association
          Central California Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to  

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          Animals
          Haven Humane Society
          Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office
          Marin Humane Society
          SPCA for Monterey County
          San Diego Human Society and SPCA


           ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT  :    According to the author's office,  
          "In the California Penal Code, both animal cruelty and  
          animal neglect are wobblers.  Both offenses have potential  
          felony charges; however the penalty for animal cruelty as a  
          misdemeanor is up to one year in county jail and/or an  
          associated fine (up to $20,000).  While the fine for animal  
          neglect is the same, the penalty for a misdemeanor offense  
          is only punishable by a maximum of 6 months in jail.   
          Although animal neglect causes prolonged agony and pain to  
          the animals involved, the penalty is not in proportion to  
          the sentence for a single act of animal cruelty.

          "Animal abuse is a serious concern, and the awareness for  
          this disturbing crime is growing. Although there is a  
          particular focus on protecting animal welfare, there is  
          also a disparity in current law surrounding this issue. 

          "Animal abuse is separated into two main categories: animal  
          cruelty and animal neglect. Animal cruelty generally refers  
          to a single act of harm on an animal, while animal neglect  
          is defined as an act that causes extended or prolonged  
          suffering.  While animal neglect can be considered a  
          horribly egregious offense inflicting extensive distress to  
          an animal, the associated penalty for the crime is  
          inconsistent with that of animal cruelty. 

          "Cases of animal neglect are prevalent, and it occurs when  
          one deprives an animal of basic needs, including shelter,  
          nutrition, and medical care.  In a study of 1,400 animal  
          cruelty cases conducted by the Humane Society of the United  
          States, 41 percent of the cases involved animal neglect.   
          This overwhelming number reiterates the importance of  
          protecting animals from neglect as well as cruelty. 

          "Whether animals are tortured or starved, too often the end  
          result in either case is death.  In cases of neglect, the  

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          abuse is more prolonged and the neglected animal ends up  
          slowly decaying and suffering due to starvation,  
          dehydration, and/or disease."

           ASSEMBLY FLOOR  : 
          AYES:  Adams, Ammiano, Arambula, Beall, Tom Berryhill,  
            Blakeslee, Block, Blumenfield, Bradford, Brownley,  
            Buchanan, Caballero, Charles Calderon, Carter, Chesbro,  
            Cook, Coto, Davis, De La Torre, De Leon, Emmerson, Eng,  
            Feuer, Fletcher, Fong, Fuentes, Fuller, Furutani, Gaines,  
            Galgiani, Gilmore, Hagman, Harkey, Hayashi, Hill, Huber,  
            Huffman, Jeffries, Jones, Lieu, Logue, Bonnie Lowenthal,  
            Ma, Mendoza, Monning, Nestande, Niello, V. Manuel Perez,  
            Portantino, Ruskin, Salas, Skinner, Solorio, Audra  
            Strickland, Swanson, Torres, Torrico, Tran, Yamada, John  
            A. Perez
          NOES:  Anderson, Bill Berryhill, Conway, DeVore, Garrick,  
            Miller, Nielsen, Norby, Silva, Smyth
          NO VOTE RECORDED:  Bass, Evans, Hall, Hernandez, Knight,  
            Nava, Saldana, Torlakson, Villines, Vacancy


          RJG:do  8/3/10   Senate Floor Analyses 

                         SUPPORT/OPPOSITION:  SEE ABOVE

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