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Dog Bite Incident Injures Animal Control Officers


Two Mendocino County animal control officials were injured in a dog bite incident even as they responded to reports of vicious pit bulls chasing people in a local neighborhood the morning of April 9, 2010. According to an article in Lake County News, the county sheriff’s officer received a 911 call from neighbors who said they were being chased by the dogs near the intersection of Laughlin Way and North State Street in Redwood Valley.

Animal control officers George Hodgson and Torsten Werner responded to the incident and encountered the two blue-nosed pit bulls that immediately attacked then. Werner was bitten on the hands and in the groin area. Hodgson struck and killed one of the pit bulls with his service weapon. The other was taken away. Werner was transported to a local hospital and treated for dog bite injuries.

Vicious Dogs Terrorizing Neighbors

It is indeed fortunate that the officers arrived on scene when they did or some of the neighbors could have been seriously injured. In fact, numerous residents in the area told officials that they were in fear of their safety. I’m glad that both the officers are recovering and did not sustain any major personal injuries. I wish them the very best for a speedy and complete recovery.

Dog Bite Statistics

According to data released by Seattle-based dog bite victims’ advocacy group,, during the five-year period between January 1, 2005 and March 8, 2010, 158 dog attacks took place in the United States. Pit bulls were responsible for 56 percent of these attacks. Together, pit bulls and Rottweilers accounted for 70 percent of all dog attacks. The numbers also show that there were 32 dog bite-related deaths in 2009 — 14 caused by pit bulls and four by Rottweilers.

Liability Issues

In this particular case, it is not clear who owned the dogs. I trust investigators are looking for the dogs’ owner. Based on this news report, it appears that the owner of these dogs let them roam around the neighborhood. In such cases, dog owners could be held liable for injuries caused by their pets. Under California Civil Code section 3342, dog owners will be held financially responsible for any injuries caused. Victims can seek compensation to cover medical expenses, loss of wages, cost of hospitalization, cosmetic surgery or even psychological counseling. An experienced San Francisco personal injury lawyer will be able to advise dog bite victims about their legal rights and options.

In what ways do you think your city’s dangerous dog ordinances need to be changed?

The Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys is not representing any of the parties mentioned in this article at the time the article was posted. Our information source is cited in the article. If you were involved in this incident or a similar incident and have questions as to your rights and options, call us or another reputable law firm. Do not act solely upon the information provided herein. Get a consultation. The best law firms will provide a free consultation. We provide a free, confidential consultation to not at fault persons named in this article. The free consultation offer extends to family members as well.

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