Rapper Chris Brown is facing a personal injury lawsuit from his housekeeper after his dog allegedly attacked her sister. According to People.com, the dog bite lawsuit, which was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court, states that Patricia Avila and her sister, Maria, were cleaning Brown’s house on Dec. 12 when the dog attack occurred. Before that date, Brown’s dogs had been kept on another part of his property, where the housekeepers could not see or interact with them.
What the Lawsuit States
The lawsuit states that a caucasian shepherd dog was in the backyard on the day of the attack. The housekeeper’s sister entered the backyard to empty the vacuum cleaner and the dog, after growling at her, “proceeded to viciously attack her.” When Avila heard her sister screaming, she ran outside where she found her sister covered in blood, prompting Brown to call 911, the lawsuit states. The victim suffered facial and leg injuries. There were also several inches of skin missing from her arm.
The injuries required multiple days in the hospital and two surgeries, according to the lawsuit. Avila also alleged that since the incident she has suffered emotional distress including post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD, severe anxiety, depression, and panic attacks, according to the lawsuit, adding that she is even reluctant to leave her home and is unable to stop re-living the pain she experienced watching her sister suffer through the horrendous dog bite attack. She is seeking an unspecified amount of monetary damages related to the incident, citing loss of wages due to being unable to work, medical bills, emotional distress, and pain and suffering.
Liability in Dog Bite Cases
California has a strict liability statute when it comes to dog attacks. This means that dog owners can be held liable for injuries their pets caused, with very few exceptions. 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.”
Injured victims of dog bites and attacks can seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost income, hospitalization, cost of cosmetic surgery, psychological counseling, past and future pain and suffering, and emotional distress. An experienced Los Angeles dog bite lawyer will be able to protect victims’ rights and make sure that negligent dog owners are held responsible.