14-159.2. Interference with animal research.

(a) It is unlawful for a person willfully to commit any of the following acts:

(1) The unauthorized entry into any research facility where animals are kept within the facility for research in the advancement of medical, veterinary, dental, or biological sciences, with the intent to (i) disrupt the normal operation of the research facility, or (ii) damage the research facility or any personal property located thereon, or (iii) release from any enclosure or restraining device any animal kept within the research facility, or (iv) interfere with the care of any animal kept within the research facility;

(2) The damaging of any such research facility or any personal property located thereon;

(3) The unauthorized release from any enclosure or restraining device of any animal kept within any research facility; or

(4) The interference with the care of any animal kept within any research facility.

(b) Any person who commits an offense under subsection (a) of this section shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

(c) Any person who commits an offense under subsection (a) of this section that involves the release from any enclosure or restraining device of any animal having an infectious disease shall be guilty of a Class I felony.

(d) As a condition of probation, the court may order a person convicted under this section to make restitution to the owner of the animal for damages, including the cost of restoring the animal to confinement and of restoring the animal to its health condition prior to any release, and for damages to personal property, including materials, equipment, data, and records, and real property caused by the interference. If the interference causes the failure of an experiment, the restitution may include all costs of repeating the experiment, including replacement of the animals, labor, and materials.

(e) Nothing in this section shall be construed to affect any rights or causes of action of a person damaged through interference with animal research. (1991, c. 203; 1993, c. 539, ss. 98, 1190; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c).)