Nevada Revised Statute 574.060 prohibits owning, managing, or profiting from an animal fighting venue, including dog fighting. A first-time offense is a category E felony, which typically carries only probation. But any subsequent offenses are category D felonies, punishable by one to four years in prison and a possible $5,000 fine.
The full text of the statute reads as follows:
NRS 574.060. 1. A person shall not knowingly keep or use, or in any manner be connected with, or be interested in the management of, or receive money for the admission of any person to, a house, apartment, pit or place kept or used for baiting or fighting any bird or animal, or be an owner or occupant of a house, apartment, pit or place who willfully procures or permits the same to be used or occupied for such baiting or fighting.
2. A person who violates any provision of subsection 1 is guilty of:
(a) For a first offense, a category E felony and shall be punished as provided in NRS 193.130.
(b) For a second or subsequent offense, a category D felony and shall be punished as provided in NRS 193.130.
3. Upon complaint under oath or affirmation to any magistrate authorized to issue warrants in criminal cases that the complainant has just and reasonable cause to suspect that any provision of law relating to or in any way affecting animals is being or is about to be violated in any particular building or place, the magistrate shall immediately issue and deliver a warrant to any person authorized by law to make arrests for such offenses, authorizing the person to enter and search the building or place, to arrest any person there present found violating any such law and to bring the person before the nearest magistrate of competent jurisdiction to be dealt with according to law.
NRS 574.060 makes it a Nevada crime to do any of the following:
- Knowingly keep, use, be connected with, manage, or receive admission to a house, apartment, pit, or other place used for animal fighting; or
- Own or occupy a house, apartment, pit, or place and willfully procure or allow animal fighting to occur there.
It does not matter whether the fights are between dogs, birds, or other animals. It also does not matter if no admission is charged.1
A first-time offense of violating NRS 574.060 is a category E felony in Nevada. The court typically imposes probation and a suspended sentence. But if the defendant has two or more prior felony convictions, the court may impose one to four years in Nevada State Prison and up to $5,000 in fines.2
A second or subsequent offense is a category D felony. The penalty is one to four years in prison, and up to $5,000 in fines (at the judge’s discretion).3
A potential defense to these charges is that the defendant genuinely did not know the location was being used for animal fighting, or that no animal fighting occurred there. Typical evidence in these cases includes video surveillance footage, recorded communications, eyewitness testimony, and the animals themselves.
See our related article on animal abuse in Nevada.
- NRS 574.060. Commission of certain acts concerning place kept or used for baiting or fighting birds or other animals unlawful; penalties. See also NRS 574.070.