Michigan Bill Would Amend Penal Code and Impose Specific Seizure and Forfeiture Procedures in Animal Cruelty and Neglect Cases

Michigan Senate Bill 657 would amend the state’s penal code to include specially trained miniature horses in the definition of service animals, to allow courts to order defendants to pay restitution, and to provide specific procedures for animal victim seizure and forfeiture. The bill also would prohibit the return of a seized animal victim to an individual convicted of a listed animal cruelty offense, including neglect, abandonment, and restrictive tethering. The bill has been referred to the Senate Committee on Civil Rights, Judiciary, and Public Safety.