Justia Animal / Dog Law Opinion Summaries

Articles Posted in New York Court of Appeals
The Court of Appeals affirmed the judgment of the courts below granting a motion to dismiss Nonhuman Rights Project's petition for writ of habeas corpus seeking to secure the transfer of Happy, an elephant residing at the Bronx Zoo, to an elephant sanctuary, holding that the lower courts properly granted the motion to dismiss the habeas petition.Petitioner Nonhuman Rights Project, a not-for-profit corporation, commenced this habeas proceeding on behalf of Happy, arguing that Happy was a cognitively complex and autonomous nonhuman animal that should be "recognized as a legal person with the right to bodily liberty protected by the common law" and immediately released from "unlawful imprisonment" at the Zoo. Supreme Court dismissed the petition. The Appellate Division affirmed, concluding that "the writ of habeas corpus is limited to human beings." The Court of Appeals affirmed, holding that nonhuman animals are not persons with a common law right to liberty that may be secured through a writ of habeas corpus. View "Nonhuman Rights Project, Inc. v. Breheny" on Justia Law