A county humane society organized under section 1717.05 of the Revised Code may appoint agents, who are residents of the county or municipal corporation for which the appointment is made, for the purpose of prosecuting any person guilty of an act of cruelty to persons or animals. Such agents may arrest any person found violating this chapter or any other law for protecting persons or animals or preventing acts of cruelty thereto. Upon making an arrest the agent forthwith shall convey the person arrested before some court or magistrate having jurisdiction of the offense, and there make complaint against the person on oath or affirmation of the offense.
All appointments of agents under this section shall be approved by the mayor of the municipal corporation for which they are made. If the society exists outside a municipal corporation, such appointments shall be approved by the probate judge of the county for which they are made. The mayor or probate judge shall keep a record of such appointments.
In order to qualify for appointment as a humane agent under this section, a person first shall successfully complete a minimum of twenty hours of training on issues relating to the investigation and prosecution of cruelty to and neglect of animals. The training shall comply with rules recommended by the peace officer training commission under section 109.73 of the Revised Code and shall include, without limitation, instruction regarding animal husbandry practices as described in division (A)(12) of that section. A person who has been appointed as a humane agent under this section prior to the effective date of this amendment may continue to act as a humane agent for a period of time on and after the effective date of this amendment without completing the training. However, on or before December 31, 2004, a person who has been appointed as a humane agent under this section prior to the effective date of this amendment shall successfully complete the training described in this paragraph and submit proof of its successful completion to the appropriate appointing mayor or probate judge in order to continue to act as a humane agent after December 31, 2004.
An agent of a county humane society only has the specific authority granted to the agent under this section and section 1717.08 of the Revised Code.
Effective Date: 04-09-2003