A 4-year-old girl was seriously injured in a dog bite incident on March 1, 2010 after a pit bull attacked her. According to a news report in the San Bernardino Sun, the girl was visiting her uncle at his apartment in the 1600 block of E. Kingsley Ave. in Pomona. Officials said the girl may have startled the pit bull that was sleeping. The girl was bitten in the face and taken to a local hospital with serious injuries. The dog was apparently not licensed and did not have current rabies vaccinations. Animal control officials took the pit bull into custody.
Child Bitten in the Face
My heart goes out to this little girl for the pain and suffering she is dealing with right now. Young children are not only physically traumatized, but also emotionally and psychologically affected as a result of such dog attacks. All serious dog bite victims deal with issues such as physical pain, disfigurement and psychological fears. I wish this young girl the very best for a speedy and complete recovery and hope she did not sustain any catastrophic injuries.
Based on this news report, it is not clear whether the girl’s parents were with her or whether her uncle was caring for her at the time. It is also not clear what provoked the dog. Did the girl accidentally step on the dog? Did the dog have any prior incidents or show signs of aggression?
Strict Liability Statute
Under California’s “strict liability statute” the owner should be held liable in this case. California’s Civil Code Section 3342 states: “The owner of any dog is liable for the damages suffered by any person who is bitten by the dog while in a public place or lawfully in a private place, including the property of the owner of the dog, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.”
What that means is that if you are a dog owner in California and if your dog bites someone, then you are liable for the injuries caused. An example of an exception is when your dog bites a burglary or someone trespassing into your property. Otherwise, whether your dog bites someone in a public or private property, you, as the owner, can be held financially responsible. If the dog owner also owns a home, then his or her homeowner’s insurance should cover the loss and damages just as an at-fault party’s car insurance covers damages in a car accident.
If you or a loved one is a dog bite victim, please get in touch with an experienced California personal injury lawyer who will advise you about your legal rights and options as well as filing a claim for compensation.
The BISNAR|CHASE personal injury law firm is not representing any of the parties mentioned in this article at the time the article was posted. Our information source is cited in the article. If you were involved in this incident or a similar incident and have questions as to your rights and options, call us or another reputable law firm. Do not act solely upon the information provided herein. Get a consultation. The best law firms will provide a free consultation. We provide a free, confidential consultation to not at fault persons named in this article. The free consultation offer extends to family members as well.