The city of Sacramento, California, has reached a $99,000 settlement with a man whose dog was shot and injured by a police officer. The settlement was reached on Tuesday, November 24.
The incident occurred in December 2019 when Kevin Cole and his dog were sitting outside the Safeway gas station on 19th Street, according to KCRA. When a security guard asked Cole to leave, he replied that he was going to the Panda Express restaurant nearby.
The guard informed Cole that he could not enter the restaurant and needed to leave before authorities were called. The police arrived and asked Cole to leave the premises, and five minutes later, they began to detain Cole.
Cole’s dog, Nikki, began barking at officers and, despite Cole’s commands to sit, eventually bit one of the policemen, who then fired their weapon. The bullet hit the ground, causing fragments to strike Cole between the eyes, Nikki in the leg, and the security guard in the leg. Cole was not charged in the incident.
Cole has since had to undergo two surgeries and is now blind in one eye due to the fragment’s damage. He filed a lawsuit against the police department and the city of Sacramento in March 2020 listing 15 claims, including unreasonable and excessive force, assault/battery, and false detention/arrest, among others.
Upon approval of the settlement, Cole’s attorney Mark Merin stated that the incident was “unnecessary use of force” by the officer.