Legislation that would toughen penalties for those who deliberately harm or kill a K-9 officer in the line of duty is headed to the state House of Representatives.
House Bill 2026 was voted out of the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday.
Under the measure sponsored by Rep. John Maher (R-Allegheny/Washington), intentionally killing or injuring a police dog would be a second-degree felony, punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $25,000.
The offense is currently a third-degree felony.
Maher proposed the bill after the fatal stabbing of a Pittsburgh police dog in January.
The full House is expected to consider his legislation as early as next week.