Pa. High Court: SPCA Not State Agency, Can Be Sued
- Created on Friday, 01 January 2010 02:32
- Last Updated on Thursday, 18 April 2013 22:10
- Published on Friday, 01 January 2010 02:26
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HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) ― The Pennsylvania Supreme Court says the nonprofit group that enforces Pennsylvania's animal control laws doesn't qualify for immunity from lawsuits because of that work.
The court upheld a Philadelphia jury's verdict that awarded a woman $155,000 from the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals after about a dozen dogs taken from her home were euthanized.
The court ruled Tuesday that there's no reason to think the General Assembly intended to grant the SPCA status as a commonwealth agency, so it's not entitled to the defense of sovereign or governmental immunity.
The dog owner, Laila Snead of Reading, says she's pleased with the decision but that money won't bring her dogs back.
An SPCA spokeswoman says the group is disappointed with the ruling because of its far-reaching implications.