Vicious dog attack leads to criminal sentence for owner
Sometimes, we lose sight of the severity of some types of harm. When most people hear of a dog bite, they may think of some time when they suffered a nip from a dog they kept or of some neighbor. They may think dismissively that it is just one more sign of the over-litigiousness of American society when they hear of a dog bite lawsuit.
Until they are informed of this man and this dog attack. In October of 2014, he was attacked when he attempted to feed some dogs of an acquaintance. The dogs mauled him, and left him in critical condition. The dog attack was so severe that he lost his left ear, left arm and left leg.
It is unclear exactly how the attack occurred, as the injured man’s memory of the events of that night are fuzzy and reports from the owner of the dog, emergency response personnel and police are also confused. It appears between five to 12 dogs attacked. Police shot one during the attack and the rest were euthanized. The owner stated only two were adults and the other nine puppies.
The man was awarded $100 million in damages, however, it was described as a “symbolic” award and he will likely recover far less.
This week the dog’s owner was sentenced to two-years’ probation with six months in jail, and if the man complies with the terms of the sentence, the judge may suspend the jail time.
The injured man is now confined to a wheelchair and has endured 35 surgeries to repair the damage caused by the attack. While this case is extreme, it is a reminder of the seriousness of the injury that can be caused by a dog attack.
Dog attacks can result in significant injuries. In addition to needing reconstructive surgery, victims can be left with dreams and other trauma from the attack, and psychological counseling may also be needed for their recovery.
Source: freep.com, “Dog owner gets probation in brutal mauling of man,” Robert Allen, Detroit Free Press, September 15, 2015