Published on Monday, June 12, 2017

Lawyer questions why dog that bit Delta passenger was in the middle seat

An attorney acting for a man who was badly injured by an emotional support dog on a Delta Air Lines flight is questioning why the dog wasn't wearing a muzzle and why it was put in the middle seat.

Revealing details of the incident, attorney J. Ross Massey said the victim, Marlin Jackson of Daphne, Alabama, had to have 28 stitches on his face after he was bitten by the animal, who was sitting on the lap of its owner.

Massey said witnesses claimed the dog growled at Mr Jackson soon after he took his seat and then, when Mr Jackson tried to buckle his seatbelt, the growling increased and the dog lunged for him.

The dog was pulled away but broke free from its owner's grasp and attacked Mr Jackson a second time.

Massey said his client couldn't escape because he was sitting in the window seat.

The incident took place while the San Diego flight was preparing to take off from Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

"It is troubling that an airline would allow a dog of such substantial size to ride in a passenger's lap without a muzzle," said a written statement by Massey, who works with Birmingham-based law firm Alexander Shunnarah & Associates.

"Especially considering the dog and its owner were assigned a middle seat despite Delta Air Lines' policies that call for the re-accommodation of larger animals.

"We expect airlines to follow procedures as required and verify any dogs traveling unrestrained in open cabin are trained for handling the large crowds and enclosed environments encountered on board an airplane."

The law firm said it is seeking information on Delta's 'compliance with policies for unrestrained larger animals within a plane's cabin and the verification process of their emotional support animal training requirements.'


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  • Support Dog

    I think the lawyer should question if the dog is really an emotional support dog. Passengers have been abusing the "emotional support" animals on board and this should stop. I cannot believe that the airlines are giving priority to a "dog" over a passenger that has a fully paid fare. Ridiculous!!! when does the madness and common sense stop.

    By Therese Bahri, Wednesday, June 28, 2017

  • Accident waiting to happen.

    What part of sitting a large dog, unmuzzled, on the lap of a middle-seat passenger next to a window-seat passenger, seems a sensible thing to do ? Are Delta slow-learners ? They once took my luggage from LAX to Maui without me ! They also were taking the most humongous pieces of oversize bags in-cabin. It took the experience of 9-11 for them to recognise that this was just plain daft. And now it's savage dogs unmuzzled in passenger seats. Lord help us all.

    By Paul Tucker, Tuesday, June 13, 2017

  • PC overruns any common sense

    So, a selfish, neurotic believes his dog's "feelings" would be mussed up by staying home since this neurotioc can never be alone himself. Delta, which could't make the right judgement call if the odds were 99% in their favor, goes all PC and puts the neurotic and JumpyBiter in a middle seat. What could have gone wrong?!

    By Evan Torch, Saturday, June 10, 2017

  • Dog Bite

    I heard the dog owner was sobbing at the airport, stating that he feared his dog would be put down. The word that comes to mind: TOUGH. What an idiot. What does he expect. And Delta were totally at fault to allow this.

    By Peter Mackness, Friday, June 9, 2017

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