Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Vancouver police defend police dog mauling

| »
Christopher Evans (33)
Christopher Evans

Lesson learned (albeit not quite the one one would’ve expected) for this unfortunate punk:

Christopher Evans, 33, is suing the Vancouver Police Department for excessive use of force after his leg was ripped open by a police dog during his arrest. Evans needed 100 staples to close the wounds after he was bitten four times.

At a news conference Monday, Vancouver police showed video of Evans repeatedly hitting the front doors of a city bus with his skateboard in the 1400 block of East Hasting Street just after midnight on June 12, 2011.

Deputy Chief Adam Palmer said a canine squad responded to the scene and chased Evans into an alley.

He said an officer warned Evans to stop running or the dog would be deployed. When Evans failed to stop, the dog was let go and ultimately took Evans down.

Palmer defended the tactics employed by dog handlers that night.

"When [an officer] is making an arrest, the first thing that has to happen is the suspect has to comply to the commands," Palmer said.


Evans claims the dog bit him repeatedly after he dropped to the ground, but Palmer said the dog bit down four times because the suspect continued to struggle.

Christopher Evans’s injured leg
Evans’s injured leg

Because being mauled by a large dog is certainly not reasonable cause for any person to panic and struggle, is it now?

It seems that municipal B.C. police departments have a bit of a long-running problem with their dogs:

Figures released last week indicate dog bites make up about 47 per cent of the in-custody injuries reported by municipal police forces in B.C. over the past two years.

Now, I’m certainly not defending Evans’s actions – the hoodlum definitely deserves some level of reprimand for what he did, and running from the cops (especially when you have done something wrong and stupid) is not generally a good idea. But just so we’re clear: When a civilian dog so much as looks at officers in a way they don’t like, that’s usually immediate grounds for doggycide. But when a police dog tears into a civilian’s leg like a loaf of ham, officials line up to excuse the mutt ’cause and it’s all the perp’s fault for “struggling” while he’s being mauled.

Got that?