State Police

ORS 181A.340
Commissioning of humane special agents

  • rules


At the request of a humane investigation agency, the Superintendent of State Police shall commission a designated employee of the humane investigation agency as a humane special agent, if:


The employee is certified, or is eligible for certification, as a police officer under the provisions of ORS 181A.355 (Definitions for ORS 181A) to 181A.689 (Standards for speech and expression);


The superintendent determines that the employee is fit and qualified to perform the duties of a humane special agent;


The humane investigation agency agrees in writing to save harmless and indemnify the State of Oregon and its officers, employees and agents from and against any tort claim or demand, whether groundless or otherwise, arising out of an alleged act or omission of the employee or the humane investigation agency, that relates to or results from the authority granted by the commission; and


The humane investigation agency furnishes to the superintendent a copy of an insurance policy, purchased and maintained by the humane investigation agency, that the superintendent determines is sufficient to satisfy any tort claim or demand described in paragraph (c) of this subsection.


Before granting a commission under this section, the superintendent may require the employee to take and subscribe to an oath of office to support the Constitution and laws of the United States and of the State of Oregon, and to honestly and faithfully perform the duties of a humane special agent.


The superintendent shall suspend or revoke a commission granted under this section if the superintendent determines that:


The certification of the employee as a police officer has lapsed or been revoked pursuant to ORS 181A.630 (Procedure for denial, suspension or revocation of application or certification), 181A.640 (Grounds for denial, suspension or revocation of application or certification of person or accreditation of program) and 181A.650 (Judicial review of department’s final order) (1), and has not been reissued under ORS 181A.650 (Judicial review of department’s final order) (2);


The employee has been separated from employment with the humane investigation agency; or


The employee has abused the commission.


Except as otherwise provided in subsection (3) of this section, an employee of a humane investigation agency commissioned under this section holds the commission at the pleasure of the superintendent. The superintendent may suspend or revoke a commission granted under this section at any time for good cause, as determined by the superintendent. If the superintendent revokes a commission granted under this section, the employee of the humane investigation agency is entitled only to an informal opportunity to be heard by the superintendent, for the purposes of explaining any factual circumstances related to the revocation and attempting to persuade the superintendent to reverse the decision to revoke the commission.


Humane special agents commissioned under this section serve at the expense of the humane investigation agency employing the agent.


The superintendent may adopt rules to carry out the provisions of this section. The rules may include a description of the circumstances in which a humane special agent is prohibited from carrying a firearm while engaged in the enforcement of animal welfare laws.


As used in this section:


“Animal welfare laws” means:


ORS 167.310 (Definitions for ORS 167) to 167.390 (Commerce in fur of domestic cats and dogs prohibited) and 167.426 (Definitions for ORS 167) to 167.439 (Forcible recovery of a fighting bird); and


ORS 164.043 (Theft in the third degree), 164.045 (Theft in the second degree), 164.055 (Theft in the first degree), 164.057 (Aggravated theft in the first degree), 164.075 (Extortion), 164.345 (Criminal mischief in the third degree), 164.354 (Criminal mischief in the second degree) and 164.365 (Criminal mischief in the first degree), if the subject of the crime is an animal.


“Humane investigation agency” means a private, nonprofit animal care agency that has maintained an animal welfare investigation department for at least five years and has had officers employed as special agents under ORS 131.805 (Authority to employ special agents). [Formerly 181.433]
Note: 181A.340 (Commissioning of humane special agents) was enacted into law by the Legislative Assembly but was not added to or made a part of ORS chapter 181A or any series therein by legislative action. See Preface to Oregon Revised Statutes for further explanation.


Last accessed
May 30, 2023