A woman who suffered life-long injuries in a ferocious dog attack was awarded $3.7 million by jurors, Thursday. The jury found Delray Beach city officials partially responsible for the attack, in fact, more so than the dog owners.
The jury assigned 40 percent of the blame to the homeowner and 60 percent to Delray Beach, making the city potentially liable for over $2.2 million dollars in damages.
The woman, whose right arm is almost useless following the attack, said, “She feels good about the outcome, but money can’t giver her back her arm.”
The jury reached their decision after deliberating for less than three hours. The jurors believe city officials could have helped to prevent the attack. ‘Primarily they’re saying if you’re going to have an animal control officer, make sure they do their job.
Animal control officials responded to a handful of complaints about the dogs being loose, but every time they responded, the dogs were secured on the property. But one code enforcement supervisor, who was called for backup, testified that he found the dogs loose.
‘You don’t call for backup unless you have a problem with these dogs,’ Smith said. ‘Had the city acted reasonably … this incident would not have happened.’
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