This coming legislative session will see the introduction of a new bill that would increase the penalties to those convicted of harming or killing a police dog or police horse.
Rep. Jonathon Hill and Rep. Neal Collins are sponsoring a bill named "Fargo's and Hyco's Law." According to the Independent Mail, the new measure means "the maximum prison sentence for killing a police dog or horse would rise from five years to 10 years. The offense also would carry a minimum two-year jail sentence and a fine of up to $20,000" if passed this coming session. Abusing a police animal would now have a five year prison sentence and a $5,000 fine.
The bill is named after Fargo, who was a Richland County Sheriff's Office dog and was killed in 2011 during a chase of an armed robber. Hyco was from the Anderson County Sheriff's Office and was fatally shot Oct. 21 while in pursuit of two men.
The bill will be filed this month as the beginning of the 2016 session nears.