Measure 5 Debate Remains Heated | VideoMichelle San Miguel | 11/4/2012
Proponents say North Dakota has weak animal cruelty laws and it`s time to address it.
"All the measure does is make things that are already illegal a felony instead of a misdemeanor and we`re talking about the most severe, malicious, intentional acts of cruelty and this is something that`s really needed in the state," said Jessica Johnson, a grassroots advocacy manger for the ASPCA.
Those who oppose the measure say it`s not comprehensive and say animal treatment legislation should be inclusive of all species. Opponents also say Measure 5 would stand in the way of a draft bill that North Dakotans for Responsible Animal Care plan to introduce to the legislature in the upcoming session.
If Measure 5 passes, intentionally harming a dog, cat or horse would be a Class C felony. Offenders could face up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.