Current Status Introducing Body:
HouseBill Number: 3777Ratification Number: 431Act Number: 374Primary Sponsor: CromerType of Legislation: GBSubject: Dangerous animals, regulation ofDate Bill Passed both Bodies: May 05, 1992Computer Document Number: NO5/7425.BDGovernor's Action: SDate of Governor's Action: May 19, 1992Introduced Date: Apr 04, 1991Date of Last Amendment: Apr 29, 1992Last History Body: ------Last History Date: May 19, 1992Last History Type: Act No. 374Scope of Legislation: StatewideAll Sponsors: CromerType of Legislation: General Bill
Bill Body Date Action Description CMN ---- ------ ------------ ------------------------------ --- 3777 ------ May 19, 1992 Act No. 374 3777 ------ May 19, 1992 Signed by Governor 3777 ------ May 13, 1992 Ratified R 431 3777 House May 05, 1992 Concurred in Senate amendment, enrolled for ratification 3777 Senate Apr 29, 1992 Amended, read third time, returned to House with amendments 3777 Senate Apr 28, 1992 Read second time, ordered to third reading with notice of general amendments, carrying over all amendments 3777 Senate Apr 01, 1992 Committee Report: Favorable 11 with amendment 3777 Senate Feb 04, 1992 Introduced, read first time, 11 referred to Committee 3777 House Jan 30, 1992 Read third time, sent to Senate 3777 House Jan 29, 1992 Amended, read second time 3777 House Jan 28, 1992 Debate adjourned until Wednesday, January 29 3777 House Jan 21, 1992 Debate adjourned until Tuesday, January 28 3777 House Jan 14, 1992 Debate adjourned until Tuesday, January 21, 1992 3777 House Jun 06, 1991 Objection by Representative 3777 House Jun 05, 1991 Recalled from Committee 25 3777 House Apr 04, 1991 Introduced, read first time, 25 referred to CommitteeView additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.
(A374, R431, H3777)
AN ACT TO AMEND ARTICLE 13, CHAPTER 3, TITLE 47, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO REGULATION OF DANGEROUS DOGS, SO AS TO PROVIDE FOR THE ARTICLE TO APPLY TO DANGEROUS ANIMALS, DEFINE TERMS, REVISE REQUIREMENTS FOR A PEN OR RUN AREA AND FOR THE RESTRAINT OF A DANGEROUS ANIMAL, PROVIDE AN EXCEPTION TO THE PROHIBITION AGAINST POSSESSING A DANGEROUS ANIMAL FOR SALE, BREEDING, OR PURCHASE, REVISE PENALTIES, REQUIRE REGISTRATION AND TAGGING OF A DANGEROUS ANIMAL AND LIABILITY INSURANCE, AND PROVIDE FOR THIS CHAPTER NOT TO ABROGATE CIVIL PENALTIES; AND TO AMEND SECTION 16-1-10, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO CRIMES CLASSIFIED AS FELONIES, SO AS TO INCLUDE THE OFFENSE IN ARTICLE 13.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
Regulation of dangerous animals
SECTION 1. Article 13, Chapter 3, Title 47 of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 515 of 1988, is amended to read:
Section 47-3-710. (A) As used in this article `dangerous animal' means an animal of the canine or feline family:
(1) which the owner knows or reasonably should know has a propensity, tendency, or disposition to attack unprovoked, cause injury, or otherwise endanger the safety of human beings or domestic animals;
(a) makes an unprovoked attack that causes bodily injury to a human being and the attack occurs in a place other than the place where the animal is confined as required by Section 47-3-720; or
(b) commits unprovoked acts in a place other than the place where the animal is confined as required by Section 47-3-720 and those acts cause a person to reasonably believe that the animal will attack and cause bodily injury to a human being;
(3) which is owned or harbored primarily or in part for the purpose of fighting or which is trained for fighting.
(B) `Dangerous animal' does not include:
(1) an animal used exclusively for agricultural purposes; or
(2) an animal which attacks a person who is trespassing or who appears to be trespassing. A trespasser is a person who is not lawfully upon the premises of the owner, as set forth in Section 47-3-770(A).
(C) An animal is not a `dangerous animal' solely by virtue of its breed or species.
(D) As used in this article `owner' means a person who owns or has custody or control of the animal.
(E) As used in this article, `injury' or `bodily injury' means (1) broken bones, (2) lacerations, (3) punctures of the skin, or (4) any physical injury resulting in death.
Section 47-3-720. No person owning or harboring or having the care or the custody of a dangerous animal may permit the animal to go unconfined on his premises. A dangerous animal is `unconfined' as used in this section if the animal is not confined securely indoors or confined in a securely enclosed fence or securely enclosed and locked pen or run area upon the person's premises. The pen or run area must be clearly marked as containing a dangerous animal and must be designed to prevent the entry of the general public, including children, and to prevent the escape or release of the animal. However, this section does not apply to an animal owned by a licensed security company and on patrol in a confined area.
Section 47-3-730. No person owning or harboring or having the care of a dangerous animal may permit the animal to go beyond his premises unless the animal is safely restrained.
Section 47-3-740. (A) No person may own or harbor an animal for the purpose of fighting or train, torment, badger, bait, or use an animal for the purpose of causing or encouraging the animal to unprovoked attacks upon human beings or domestic animals.
(B) No person may possess with intent to sell, offer for sale, breed, or buy or attempt to buy a known dangerous animal; however, this subsection does not apply to a person who is licensed to possess and breed an animal under the classifications specified and regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture under the Animal Welfare Act as codified in Title 7 of the United States Code.
Section 47-3-750. (A) If a law enforcement agent has probable cause to believe that a dangerous animal is being harbored or cared for in violation of Section 47-3-720 or 47-3-740 or 47-3-760(E), he may petition the court having jurisdiction to order the seizure and impoundment of the dangerous animal while the trial is pending.
(B) If a law enforcement agent has probable cause to believe that a dangerous animal is being harbored or housed in violation of Section 47-3-730, he may seize and impound the dangerous animal while the trial is pending.
Section 47-3-760. (A) A person who violates Section 47-3-720 or 47-3-730 or subsection (E) of this section or who is the owner of a dangerous animal which attacks and injures a domestic animal is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, for a first offense, must be fined not more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days and, upon conviction of a subsequent offense, must be fined one thousand dollars none of which may be suspended or remitted.
(B) A person who is the owner of a dangerous animal which attacks and injures a human being in violation of Section 47-3-710(A)(2)(a) is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, for a first offense, must be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty-six months and, upon conviction of a subsequent offense, must be fined not more than ten thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than five years.
(C) A dangerous animal which attacks a human being or domestic animal may be ordered destroyed when in the court's judgment the dangerous animal represents a continuing threat of serious harm to human beings or domestic animals.
(D) A person found guilty of violating this article shall pay all expenses, including, but not limited to, shelter, food, veterinary expenses for boarding and veterinary expenses necessitated by the seizure of an animal for the protection of the public, medical expenses incurred by a victim from an attack by a dangerous animal, and other expenses required for the destruction of the animal.
(E) A person owning a dangerous animal shall register the animal with the local law enforcement authority of the county in which the owner resides. The requirements of the registration must be determined by the county governing body. However, the registration application must be accompanied by proof of liability insurance of at least fifty thousand dollars insuring the owner for personal injuries inflicted by the dangerous animal. In addition, the county governing body shall provide to the owner registering the dangerous animal a metal license tag and a certificate. The metal license tag shall at all times be attached to a collar or harness worn by the dangerous animal for which the certificate and tag have been issued.
(F) Nothing in this chapter is designed to abrogate any civil remedies available under statutory or common law.
Section 47-3-770. (A) A person lawfully is upon the premises of the owner within the meaning of this article when he is on the premises in the performance of a duty imposed upon him by the laws of this State, by the laws or postal regulations of the United States, when he is on the premises upon invitation, expressed or implied, of the owner, or when he is in the performance of a duty relative to public safety, which includes policemen, firemen, or other authorized personnel. A person may ingress to and egress from the premises for a purpose connected with the performance of the public safety duty.
(B) A person who lawfully is on the owner's premises and who is attacked by a dangerous animal or witnesses the attack may use reasonable force to repel the attack. A person is not liable in damages or otherwise for action to repel or action taken to restrain or control an animal from an unprovoked attack."
Offense classified as a felony
SECTION 2. In addition to the crimes classified as felonies in Section 16-1-10 of the 1976 Code, violation of Section 47-3-760(B) of the 1976 Code as amended in Section 1 of this act is a felony.
SECTION 3. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.
Approved the 19th day of May, 1992.