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Minnesota Bill Ups Penalties For Harming Police Dogs

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ST. PAUL¬† (AP) — Harming or killing a law enforcement dog could come with stiffer penalties under legislation making its way through the Minnesota Legislature.

Lawmakers take a deeper look Tuesday at a bill that would increase potential restitution costs for people who hurt dogs used in police actions, search and rescue, correctional facilities or arson investigations.

Under the bill, killing or causing great bodily harm to such a dog could result in prison time, a fine of up to $5,000 and restitution costs of up to $25,000. Current penalties in state law don’t require restitution.

Republican Rep. Tony Cornish of Good Thunder was to make his case for the legislation to the House Judiciary Policy and Finance Committee. A corresponding Senate bill hasn’t been heard yet in committee.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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