In 2012, the Florida Legislature enacted a law allowing therapy dogs to assist in judicial proceedings. Shortly thereafter, the nonprofit organization Companions for Courage was founded. The organization provides therapy dogs to witnesses who may have difficulty providing in-court testimony.
In a recent Orange County case, a mentally disabled witness was coupled with Karl, a therapy dog from Companions for Courage. Although difficult for the witness, she was able to complete her testimony with Karl sitting at her feet. The witness later acknowledged to a friend that she would not have been able to make it through the testimony without Karl.
For more information, see:
Melodi Smith, " 'I couldn't have done this without Karl,' woman says about court dog therapy program," Click Orlando, Nov. 16, 2016, http://www.clickorlando.com/news/investigators/i-couldnt-have-done-this-without-karl-woman-says-about-court-dog-therapy-program