TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Penalties for seriously injuring or killing a police canine in Florida could soon be on the rise.
The Senate Criminal Justice Committee unanimously approved a bill that would make that crime a second-degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison. It's now a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison.
Bill sponsor Sen. Aaron Bean said two police canines have been killed by individuals in the last six months in Florida.
A Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office K-9 was shot and killed in the line of duty on Christmas Eve.
The increased penalties would also apply to anyone who seriously injures or kills a police horse or canines used by fire departments and search and rescue teams.