Cop Claims 'Official Immunity' After Police Dog Attacks Innocent Boy (Video)

| by Michael Allen

When a dog injures a person, the dog owner is normally liable for the injuries.

DeKalb County, Georgia doesn't think that applies to Police Officer Lynn Eshleman even though a K-9 police dog in her care mauled an 11-year-old boy on Nov. 6, 2011 (video below).

The dog escaped from Eshleman's truck and attacked Chandler Key who was playing football with some friends in a neighbor's yard, reports 11 Alive.

Key ran from the dog, Andor, who brought the youngster down and repeatedly bit him. Eshleman, who was Key's neighbor, claims she warned the children in the area to stand still if the K-9 officer escaped. 

Key's father filed a lawsuit that claimed Eshleman was liable for negligence because she had failed to properly restrain the dog. Key's dad claims his son suffered laceration and puncture wounds, mental trauma and still has scars from the incident.

DeKalb County and Eshleman have fought the case all the way to the Georgia Supreme Court after losing in a previous trial court and at the U.S. Court of Appeals.

DeKalb County Attorney Kendric Smith claims Eshleman has official immunity, which is a special legal protection for some public officials, such as police, when they are faced with a difficult judgement call.

The boy's lawyers claim this isn't an issue of making a judgement call in the line of duty, but rather negligence by the officer to secure the dog, noted WSB-TV.

The Georgia Supreme Court will rule on the case in July.

Sources: 11 Alive, WSB-TV Image Credit: WSB-TV Screenshot