Broken gate leads to large dog attacking woman walking her small dog
Case: Woman in her mid 70s walking her small dog is attacked by Akita
(Our client was walking her small dog when a large breed Akita (dog) escaped from its yard due to a faulty gate latch. The Akita attacked both my client and her small dog causing injuries. The owner of the Akita denied there was anything wrong with their gate. His insurance company was denying responsibility. Neighbors confirmed as witnesses that the Akita had been loose several times before due to the broken gate, and that the gate was in fact broken at the time of the attack.)
Our client, a woman in her mid 70s, was taking her dog for a walk in her neighborhood. During her walk a large Akita ran from across the street where she was walking and started to attack her small dog on the leash. Our client pulled her dog up by her leash to get her dog away from the Akita. The Akita started lunging at our client and bit and tore at her arm several times as well as biting her legs several times in its frenzy. A neighbor ran out of his home and grabbed the Akita by the collar and pulled it off of our client. The injuries to our client required treatment at a wound care center. (Her small dog survived, but also required surgery at the veterinarians office).
The homeowners insurance company at first denied the claim. Their homeowner claimed that children in the neighborhood must have opened his gate without his permission, letting his dog loose from his back yard. The homeowner denied anything was wrong with his gate. Interviews with neighbors indicated that the homeowner's gate would often come open due to the latch on the gate being broken. They stated that the dog in question had run loose in the neighborhood occasionally due to the problem with the gate. The immediate neighbors stated that the dog would bark loudly at people as they walked by the house, and that they were always a bit nervous that the dog would come through the broken gate. A lawsuit was filed and depositions of the neighbors were taken regarding the condition of the gate and seeing the dog loose in the neighborhood on multiple occasions due to the gate's condition. Faced with evidence that contradicted their homeowners claims, the insurance company settled the case and paid the value of the claim, covering our client's medical treatment, her pain and suffering, and for the injuries caused to her small dog.