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April Boyd plays with her 4-month-old pit bull puppy, Buddy, in this 2009 file photo in Mitchell. Boyd adopted Buddy after one of his previous owners cut off his ears with a pair of scissors. (Daily Republic File Photo)

Animal cruelty will remain misdemeanor, South Dakota Senate committee decides

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PIERRE -- The crime of animal cruelty should remain a misdemeanor in South Dakota rather than be upgraded to a felony in cases involving dogs, cats and horses, a state Senate panel decided Tuesday.

The legislation brought by Sen. Stan Adelstein, R-Rapid City, and Rep. Anne Hajek, R-Sioux Falls, came in response to sickening instances of animals deliberately injured or killed.

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