Man’s best friend is proving expensive for police forces that have had to pay out large sums in personal injury compensation to members of the public who have been bitten by police dogs.
In the past three years, £770,000 has been paid to people who suffered from K9 bites. Greater Manchester police have paid out the largest sums after victims lodged personal injury claims.
The largest individual payout was £49,000 but during the three year timeframe, 2,725 suspects, 155 members of the public and 196 police personnel suffered from the teeth of police dogs.
A 13 year old boy who had a phobia about dogs received a payout from Cheshire Police and a Durham man received £7,000 after he received a bite when jogging past a canine.
Nick Ingram, an assistant chief constable from the Acpo police dogs unity claimed that the animals are not dangerous. He pointed out that Acpo’s Police Dog Working Group strives to make sure that the dogs provide optimum performance and deployment, management and training of the dogs is improved constantly.
German or Belgian Shepherd dogs are general purpose and search for suspects, detain someone who runs away and find objects that are dropped during a chase, whilst Labradors and Spaniels tend to be used to sniff out cash, drugs and explosives.
If you have been bitten by a police dog, you would be advised to visit a personal injury solicitor to discuss your compensation claim.