Court Clears Cops In Police Dog Attack

ATLANTA (AP) - Appellate judges say two Florida police officers
cannot be sued by a man who claims they maliciously allowed a
police dog to attack him during his arrest.

Robert W. Crenshaw claimed in his civil rights lawsuit that Charlotte County Deputy Robert Lister's use of a canine to apprehend him was excessive force and that Deputy Emmitt Merritt failed to intervene to stop the attack. Crenshaw said he had announced he was surrendering.

A federal judge in Florida allowed the suit to proceed, but a panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday that the deputies were entitled to qualified immunity.

The panel said the two exercised what they deemed reasonable means to apprehend what they thought was an armed robbery suspect
hiding in thick underbrush.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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