LRPD K-9 attack victim speaks out

SALINE COUNTY (KATV) - Norman Beth said he's contemplating filing a civil lawsuit against the Little Rock Police Department after he and another neighbor were attacked by an LRPD K-9 officer dog after the dog escaped his handler's backyard.

Beth said he had just finished mowing his lawn when he bent down to turn on a water spigot in his backyard. When he turned around he saw "Ammo" - the K-9 belonging to Officer Justin Harris staring him down.

"I look back and it was a big dog," recounted Beth.

A Saline County Sheriff's report said the dog managed to break free from his outdoor pen and jump a six-foot security fence before running across the street to Beth's home and latching onto his leg. The report mentioned that Officer Harris wasn't home at the time of the attack.

"As my leg was bleeding out, I yelled, 'CALL 9-1-1, CALL 9-1-1," exclaimed Beth.

Beth managed to take shelter in his garage, yelling out to his neighbor that the dog was coming toward him too.

"But the dog got a piece of him too," added Beth.

Beth had to be transported to St. Vincent's Hospital in Little Rock where he received several stitches for a large laceration on the back of his knee. He claims he lost at least two pints of blood during the whole ordeal.

"Ammo", a Dutch Shepherd, has been with the LRPD force for a little more than three years. It's the first time an LRPD K-9 has ever attacked unprovoked and the department took a proactive approach on Tuesday - making sure K-9 pens are impenetrable.

"Immediately we've instructed our K-9 officers to implement some type of secondary locking device on [the pens] so that the dogs are no longer able to defeat that locking mechanism," said Sgt. Cassandra Davis, Little Rock Police.

But Beth said that secondary locking device was too late for him and he blames the officer in charge of the dog.

"When you bring a dog home, you're responsible for him, whether you're there or not," said Beth.

Beth mentioned Officer Harris had come over to apologize the morning after the attack. He said the conversation was very cordial, but said it didn't make up for the fact his dog attacked him.

Officer Harris is not facing reprimand from LRPD. The dog is on a ten day home quarantine per Saline County statute concerning vicious dogs. Little Rock Police mention "Ammo" will return to the force once done with his quarantine.