Maryland

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Titlesort descending Summary
Assal v. Barwick (Kidwell)
Brooks v. Jenkins County deputies went to a home with a warrant to arrest a couple's son. While many facts in this case were in dispute, the undisputed result was that a deputy shot the family's chocolate Labrador retriever. While the couple left the house to take the dog to the vet, the deputies entered the house—contrary to the couple's express instructions— and arrested the son. The couple filed a complaint in the Circuit Court seeking damages, on a number of theories, for the wounding of the dog and the officers' alleged unlawful entry into their home. After a trial, the couple prevailed against the deputies and the jury awarded damages totaling $620,000 (reduced, after remittitur, to $607,500). The deputies appeal. The Maryland Court of Special Appeals held the issue of whether deputy acted with gross negligence in shooting dog was for the jury; CJ § 11–110 did not limit the couple's total recovery for the constitutional tort to the capped value of their pet's vet bills; the $200,000 jury award in non-economic damages to the couple on their constitutional tort claim was not excessive in light of the evidence; the deputies were entitled to immunity from the constitutional trespass claim; and the couple could not recover emotional damages on the common law trespass claim. The lower court's decision was therefore affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded.
Coroneos v. Montgomery County


Pursuant to a warrant, the police seized all un-cared for animals owned by a reptile distributor.   The distributor was told he could appeal the seizure, but must prepay the costs of boarding and caring for the animals pending the appeal.  The trial court granted summary judgment in favor fo the county and the Court of Special Appeals reversed, holding the owner was not required by the county code to prepay the costs of care as a condition for an appeal.         

Detailed Discussion of Maryland Great Ape Laws The following article discusses Maryland Great Ape law. Maryland regulates possession of Great Apes both expressly via state law as well as indirectly via reference to federal law. At the state level, it bans the importation, sale and transfer of dangerous animals through its anti-cruelty law. (MD CRIM LAW § 10-621) Maryland does not define the term “dangerous animal,” but section (b) lists all non-human primates as one of eight categories of animal that “[a] person may not import into the State, offer for sale, trade, barter, possess, breed, or exchange….” Although Maryland does have several laws that either reference Great Apes specifically or reference federal laws meant to protect Great Apes, many exceptions have been carved out of these protections. As such, Maryland's laws regulating possession and usage of Great Apes is mediocre compared to other states at best.
Hurd v. State


 In this Maryland case, Defendant appealed his convictions for two counts of aggravated cruelty to animals and two counts of malicious destruction of property valued under $500 relating to the fatal shooting of two of his neighbor's (Randolph's) dogs. On appeal, Defendant maintains the language of the former text of 10-416(b)(3), a section of the Natural Resources Code dealing with deer hunting, renders the shooting justifiable. The Court found that Section 10-416(b)(3) is ambiguous; as such, based on the rule of lenity, the Court construed section 10-416(b)(3), with one exception, as giving persons in Washington County (prior to the 2009 amendment) a right to kill a dog pursing a deer whether or not the dog was being used for purposes of deer hunting. However, the Court found that Section 10-416 of the Natural Resources Article gave Defendant no privilege to kill a dog pursuing a turkey.

Maryland General Laws Supplement 1890-1898: Cruelty to Animals


The Maryland General Laws supplement covers the additions to the Cruelty of Animals statutes for Maryland from 1890-1898.  The amendments cover court procedure  to implementation of specific laws for certain animals.

MD - Assistance Animal - Assistance Animal/Guide Dog Laws


The following statutes comprise Maryland's relevant assistance animal/guide dog laws.

MD - Bite - Maryland Dangerous Dog Laws


This Maryland statute outlines what is a "Dangerous dog."  As defined by statute, it is a dog that, without provocation, has killed or inflicted severe injury on a person, or it is a potentially dangerous dog that bites a person, when not on its owner's real property, kills or inflicts severe injury on a domestic animal, or attacks without provocation.  An owner of a dangerous dog must keep the dog securely enclosed on his or her property or must muzzle and restrain the dog.  A person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and on conviction is subject to a fine not exceeding $2,500.

MD - Cat - Title 13. Emblems; Commemorative Days; Manual.


The calico cat is the Maryland state cat.

MD - Cruelty - Consolidated Cruelty Statutes


This Maryland statutory section comprises the state's anti-cruelty provisions.  Under the section, "animal" means a living creature except a human being.  "Cruelty" is defined as the unnecessary or unjustifiable physical pain or suffering caused or allowed by an act, omission, or neglect, and includes torture and torment.  Agricultural, veterinary, research, and "an activity that may cause unavoidable physical pain to an animal, including food processing, pest elimination, animal training, and hunting. . . " are excluded from the purview of the act.

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