Legislation that would toughen penalties for those who deliberately harm or kill a K-9 officer in the line of duty has passed the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.
House Bill 2026 is headed to the Senate following the unanimous vote 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.
Maher says current laws apply the same weight to the offense of taunting a police dog as killing one.
He proposed the bill after the fatal stabbing of a Pittsburgh police dog in January.