Torture is Legal in New Mexico
There is no law protecting horses against abuse in New Mexico. Horses are EXEMPT from the New Mexico Animal Cruelty Law.
Yes, You Can:
. . . Poke your horse’s eyes out, and leave him to suffer in New Mexico.
Anything Goes In New Mexico!
New Mexicans ARE clearly opposed to the unbelievable cruelties perpetrated on horses as discovered by Animals Angels at the Southwest Auction house in Los Lunas, New Mexico recently reported in the New York Times and the Albuquerque Journal.
However, Governor Martinez and Attorney General Gary King seem complicit by their lack of action.
Is this because their administration has been lobbying for a Horse Slaughter Plant?
Might protections for horses interfere?
Below are the relevant State of New Mexico statutes regarding Animal Cruelty (emphasis added to the portions directly related to horses and their general exemption from Animal Cruelty statutes):
2011 NMSA 1978 (unannotated)/NMSA 1978 (unannotated)/CHAPTER 30 Criminal Offenses /ARTICLE 18 Animals /30-18-1. Cruelty to animals; extreme cruelty to animals;
30-18-1. Cruelty to animals; extreme cruelty to animals; penalties; exceptions.
A. As used in this section, “animal” does not include insects or reptiles.
B. Cruelty to animals consists of a person:
(1) negligently mistreating, injuring, killing without lawful justification or tormenting an animal; or
(2) abandoning or failing to provide necessary sustenance to an animal under that person’s custody or control.
C. As used in Subsection B of this section, “lawful justification” means:
(1) humanely destroying a sick or injured animal; or
(2) protecting a person or animal from death or injury due to an attack by another animal.
D. Whoever commits cruelty to animals is guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be sentenced pursuant to the provisions of Section 31-19-1 NMSA 1978. Upon a fourth or subsequent conviction for committing cruelty to animals, the offender is guilty of a fourth degree felony and shall be sentenced pursuant to the provisions of Section 31-18-15 NMSA 1978.
E. Extreme cruelty to animals consists of a person:
(1) intentionally or maliciously torturing, mutilating, injuring or poisoning an animal; or
(2) maliciously killing an animal.
F. Whoever commits extreme cruelty to animals is guilty of a fourth degree felony and shall be sentenced pursuant to the provisions of Section 31-18-15 NMSA 1978.
G. The court may order a person convicted for committing cruelty to animals to participate in an animal cruelty prevention program or an animal cruelty education program. The court may also order a person convicted for committing cruelty to animals or extreme cruelty to animals to obtain psychological counseling for treatment of a mental health disorder if, in the court’s judgment, the mental health disorder contributed to the commission of the criminal offense. The offender shall bear the expense of participating in an animal cruelty prevention program, animal cruelty education program or psychological counseling ordered by the court.
H. If a child is adjudicated of cruelty to animals, the court shall order an assessment and any necessary psychological counseling or treatment of the child.
I. The provisions of this section do not apply to:
(1) fishing, hunting, falconry, taking and trapping, as provided in Chapter 17 NMSA 1978;
(2) the practice of veterinary medicine, as provided in Chapter 61, Article 14 NMSA 1978;
(3) rodent or pest control, as provided in Chapter 77, Article 15 NMSA 1978;
(4) the treatment of livestock and other animals used on farms and ranches for the production of food, fiber or other agricultural products, when the treatment is in accordance with commonly accepted agricultural animal husbandry practices;
(5) the use of commonly accepted Mexican and American rodeo practices, unless otherwise prohibited by law;
(6) research facilities licensed pursuant to the provisions of 7 U.S.C. Section 2136, except when knowingly operating outside provisions, governing the treatment of animals, of a research or maintenance protocol approved by the institutional animal care and use committee of the facility; or
(7) other similar activities not otherwise prohibited by law.
J. If there is a dispute as to what constitutes commonly accepted agricultural animal husbandry practices or commonly accepted rodeo practices, the New Mexico livestock board shall hold a hearing to determine if the practice in question is a commonly accepted agricultural animal husbandry practice or commonly accepted rodeo practice.
Authors note: The provision J. above is a subjective determination made by the Livestock Board which has no equine advocates who are not connected with the horses industry ie making money from horses. Use of provision J. is slow, prejudiced against horses and appears legally ineffective against friends and associates of the Livestock Board.
2011 NMSA 1978 (unannotated)/NMSA 1978(unannotated)/CHAPTER77 Animals and Livestock /ARTICLE 2 Livestock Board /77-2-1.1Definitions. (2001)
As used in The Livestock Code:
A. “animals” or “livestock” means all domestic or domesticated animals that are used or raised on a farm or ranch, including the carcasses thereof, and exotic animals in captivity and includes horses, asses, mules, cattle, sheep, goats, swine, bison, poultry, ostriches, emus, rheas, camelids and farmed cervidae upon any land in New Mexico; provided that for the purposes of Chapter 77, Article 9 NMSA 1978, “animals” or “livestock” have the meaning defined in that article. “Animals” or “livestock” does not include canine or feline animals. For the purpose of the rules governing meat inspection, wild animals, poultry and birds used for human consumption shall also be included within the meaning of “animals” or “livestock”;
For more back ground information: NM Governor Susana Martinez- Against Horse Slaughter . . . Really?
1. Please ask that Governor Martinez issue an Executive Order against Horse Slaughter in NM.
2. Please ask that Governor Martinez and Attorney General Gary King change the NM Animal Cruelty law so that horses are not exempted from it as Livestock.
Governor Martinez- Phone: (505) 476-2200
Attorney General Gary King – Phone: (505) 827-6000
This is not a political issue-it is a matter of common decency.